What is the blockchain-as-a-service (BaaS) technology
Blockchain-as-a-Service (BaaS) is a cloud-based service that allows organizations to build, host, and use their blockchain applications, smart contracts, and functions on the cloud. BaaS providers offer a platform and infrastructure for organizations to develop and deploy blockchain applications without the need to set up and maintain their blockchain network.
BaaS is often used by organizations that want to leverage the benefits of blockchain technology but do not have the resources or expertise to build and maintain their blockchain infrastructure. BaaS providers typically offer a range of services, including blockchain platform hosting, security, and maintenance, as well as support for developing and deploying blockchain applications.
Some examples of BaaS providers include IBM Blockchain, Microsoft Azure, and Amazon Web Services.
Blockchain as a service company bridges an enterprise blockchain platform and enterprise companies. Typically, each enterprise may need more customization than the platform initially developed.
Because usually, these platforms offer a generalized version of blockchain technology, and frankly, not all companies can integrate this platform.
Some businesses may need more privacy, and some may not. But customizing the platform with your development team might not be the ideal solution. In addition, developers who have never developed or worked with blockchain platforms will leave many security gaps, and in the long run, this will hurt the company itself.
Blockchains are everywhere these days, gradually taking over all markets. Why not? Blockchain offers many applications that can provide a faster exit than our traditional network system. And now, with all the businesses exploring blockchain, a different kind of market is emerging.
Blockchain as a Service, or BAAS, is another market that is a big part of the blockchain economy. Considering so many requirements of this new technology, it was pretty obvious. If you are among the blockchain enthusiasts looking for a good blockchain as a service option, then you have come to the right place.
Blockchain is becoming more and more popular not only in cryptocurrencies but also in financial transactions where security and transparency are a must. However, it is costly and technologically difficult to create, maintain and operate a blockchain. This is why many small and medium-sized companies are hesitant to invest entirely in blockchain, even though its benefits are clear. However, blockchain as a service can quickly solve this problem.
This is based on the Software as a Service (SaaS) model, where a company invests explicitly in the blockchain’s creation, maintenance, and operation. That company can then offer the benefits of the blockchain to other companies as a service by charging a fee. They can provide blockchain on distributed ledgers like Ethereum, Bitcoin, R3 Corda, Hyperledger Fabric, Quorum, etc., along with edge services like system security, bandwidth management, resource optimization, etc.
Thus, many small and medium-sized companies that do not want to create and maintain their blockchain systems from scratch can still get the benefits of blockchain for a nominal fee. These companies can focus on their core business and get the added value from the blockchain without becoming technology experts. Thus, they benefit from blockchain, including increased security, while reducing the risk of investing in blockchain as a service (BaaS).
How does BAAS work?
Blockchain as a service works in a relatively simple way. BAAS providers will set up your blockchain implementation, but you will need to pay them. So by paying for BAAS, you will be paying BAAS providers to deploy and maintain your blockchain nodes.
In addition, this process requires BAAS providers to handle internal services, in particular end-to-end services for their business and customers.
In addition, BAAS providers take care of and maintain important blockchain technology artifacts. In addition, this also includes hosting requirements, security protocols such as layer hack protection, appropriate resource allocation, bandwidth management, and more.
This way, when using BAAS solutions, you can focus on your core business instead of worrying about network statistics and performance issues.
Blockchain as a Service provider provides developers with a framework to build blockchain-based applications, functions, and smart contracts in exchange for utility tokens. Since smart contracts are required to run the BaaS infrastructure developers use, utility tokens are used to pay for their launch and execution. The BaaS provider has already developed complete toolkits, and an intuitive user interface for users to build their dApp projects, most of which are custom presets, so you pay money to create your dApp seamlessly.
What are the benefits of BaaS?
The three main advantages of BaaS are that it is cost-effective, easy to use, and requires little knowledge of the blockchain.
To create your blockchain application with your hosting, the costs will be high, which turns off many people with dApp ideas because not only does their vision require a lot of money, but it also requires a lot of money to maintain it.
It would be best to have blockchain infrastructure, programmers, Software, hardware, licensing, consulting, bandwidth costs, security, etc. All this can quickly add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
To build your blockchain dapp as a service provider, you ease that burden by allowing the provider to maintain the software services your dapp uses, doing most of it for you in exchange for a fee. As long as the platform allows for a reasonable degree of customization, using the blockchain as a service provider to help bring your dApp to life is incredibly cost-effective as it is much more expensive to maintain a whole team of experts to update and manage the Software constantly.
Easy to use
Blockchain applications, especially when you start adding new features, are incredibly complex technology that can take months or even years to develop before being used by a wider audience. Using blockchain as a service, since they offer pre-built toolkits and customizable templates, you can build your dApp quickly and efficiently. This convenient service covers most of your dApp’s initial needs.
Extensive customization options
Similar to a managed website hosting platform like WordPress or Wix, Blockchain as a Service providers have customizable templates and toolkits ready for you to plug and play and create your own dApp. This allows you to focus on your business and front-end development, and all you have to worry about is whether the template fits your dApp needs. You can choose the template that best suits your product and then change it as it grows and has new requirements.
Little knowledge required
To create your self-hosted blockchain application, you need much knowledge, and it can take years to acquire all this knowledge, not to mention the money you need to accept it. Blockchain as a service allows you to build a dApp without that knowledge because they compressed it and gave you the tools. Now they have significantly reduced the development time. But don’t be fooled; you will still need some knowledge of how blockchains and dApps work, but much less than if you were doing the development yourself.
What are the disadvantages of BaaS?
The downsides of BaaS are that because you didn’t do any internal development, if something goes wrong, you have no control, and business continuity could be in question if your provider shuts down or changes its terms.
Lack of control
The cloud service model that allows you to customize and build a dApp makes it easy to work with the back-end, but when something related to the back-end goes wrong, you have no control over how the technical problem is resolved. Users of your dApp will be the first to come to you to resolve a technical issue, and you will have to contact the BaaS provider. This can lead to delays and distrust from your users if it happens frequently.
Another downside to trusting blockchain as a service platform is that you build your business on it. When you agree, you need their continuity and longevity as their own company for yours to survive. If your provider somehow goes bust or fails to fulfill their part of your deal by maintaining their infrastructure and adding new features, disruptions to your service can be costly.
However, these drawbacks can be mitigated by simply choosing the platform you build on and carefully selecting a platform that doesn’t block you. A blockchain lock is when you are tied to using only one blockchain. So now that Ethereum fees are high, it is a risk because you are locked into this blockchain.
By choosing a “blockchain independent” platform, you reduce the problems that come with sticking to just one blockchain. You use multiple networks, so if one network is down or the fees are astronomical, you have options to get around that.
How to choose the right BaaS platform
Choosing the right vendor is critical because it is the foundation upon which you build your application and business. Your experience can be smooth and hassle-free with the right supplier, and you’ll get exactly what you’re looking for. Choosing the right platform depends on many factors, so we’ve narrowed it down to the primary factors you want to pay attention to.
Reputation and experience
One of the first things you should look for when looking for a supplier is their reputation and experience. How long have they been providing services? Who are their current clients? Do they have some scandals behind them or a clean track record? See what they are known for, some specialize in specific areas or blockchains, some are known for better security or mor; solemnization. They are worth paying attention to if they have satisfied customers and a clean reputation.
If it’s a relatively new company, look at what early adopters and investors are saying and the company’s roadmap. Do they have sponsors and investors? Many promising companies are showing good results.
Smart contract integration
Smart contracts are exclusive to the blockchain and are one of the benefits of building a dApp on it. Smart contracts not only include the terms of the agreement but also enforce them, providing for penalties in case one of the parties violates the terms. It is a complex technology required for many business transactions on the blockchain. It is essential to understand if you will use smart contracts and choose a provider according to their smart contract integration.
Frameworks and blockchain network
Ethereum is not the only blockchain that can host dApps and gives you many more options. When choosing a provider, make sure it offers deployment on the blockchain you are interested in and uses the same framework you will be using for your dApp.
Pricing and support
Price is, of course, an essential factor. You want to pay for quality service in a way that fits your budget. And since you’re using a third-party app to deploy a dApp, look for a provider with good customer support. God forbid there will be technical problems on their part, and you won’t be able to solve them because they don’t have much support.
Popular BaaS providers
Here are some of the most:
Amazon Web Services (AWS)
An industry leader across the board, AWS is integrating blockchain-based networks and business processes for some of the world’s largest companies. They deploy their BaaS on Ethereum and Hyperledger Fabric. You can create with a free tier for a year and run a dapp in a few minutes by watching short tutorials. As a side note, AWS is a centralized service, which means they create, owns, and controls its software service offerings.
Blockstream’s BaaS enables the creation of scalable solutions for the Bitcoin ecosystem and protocol. Their technology is accelerating the adoption of Bitcoin-based peer-to-peer funding. They allow the introduction of new features in Bitcoin and the issuance of new digital assets using sidechains.
Leeway Hertz is unique in that they offer you a way to build your dApp and blockchain consulting to help you develop your idea and analyze the potential of blockchain for your business case. They have a whole process to take your dapp from concept to deployment.
Pontem is a BaaS provider that provides a bridge between the regulated and unregulated world of cryptocurrencies. Pontem allows users to build, test, and deploy dApps on the Polkadot blockchain to test market fit before they can deploy dApps on the Facebook Diem permissioned blockchain. Unlike AWS, a centralized solution, Pontem uses software services from other partners, such as a structure from Pinknode and oracle services from ORAO, to add to the platform’s decentralization.
VironIT is another large software development comp platform’s decentralization. With VironIT, you can go through all the steps from consulting to deployment. They offer a variety of BaaS so that you can do anything from smart contract development to blockchain development, even mobile apps with blockchain integration.
The future development of BaaS
The future of BaaS looks bright as it continues to grow in popularity and become an increasingly important part of the development ecosystem. Several trends are likely to shape the future development of BaaS platforms. Some of the key trends to watch include:
- Serverless architectures: As the use of serverless architectures continues to grow, BaaS platforms will need to adapt to support this trend. This could involve the development of new tools and services designed explicitly for serverless environments and improvements to existing BaaS offerings to make them more compatible with serverless architectures.
- Data security and privacy: As concerns about data security and privacy continue rising, BaaS platforms must prioritize protecting their users’ data. This could involve the implementation of stronger security measures and the development of new tools and services to help developers build applications that prioritize data privacy.
- Low-code and no-code development: The demand for low-code and no-code development platforms is expected to grow in the coming years. BaaS providers will need to offer more user-friendly platforms that enable developers to build applications more quickly and efficiently, even if they have limited coding experience.
- Integration with other platforms and technologies: As the development ecosystem becomes more complex, BaaS platforms will need seamless integration with a wide range of media and technologies. This will allow developers to build more powerful and feature-rich applications that utilize the latest technologies.
Blockchain as a service is another crucial element on the way to mass blockchain adoption. With the ability to create and deploy dApps more easily, millions of developers using services like AWS will be able to create decentralized applications easily. BaaS makes building a blockchain application more accessible than ever before and reduces the cost of doing it yourself; it bridges the gap between the knowledge and tools to create a decentralized application and people with unique ideas they want to implement.