Online education portals like Udacity and Coursera are really changing the world of remote learning in significant ways. By making free and high quality education accessible to a global audience, these platforms are opening up undreamt of possibilities for communities around the world to improve, grow, and prosper in the digital economy of the 21st century. Education at top tier colleges and universities has traditionally been a social and economic privilege, but now anyone can join in the learning revolution by sitting in virtual classrooms with the world’s best and brightest educators. Whether this involves learning how to code and build smart phone apps, or starting up a new business, or learning about public health literacy, the sky is the limit of what’s now possible.

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Top 3 Cloud PaaS Providers for your next app

Unless you have been living under a rock for a while, you might already be aware of how cloud PaaS providers are changing the apps game. With the advent of cloud computing, the technology and processes for hosting, deploying, scaling and maintaining your app have become easy as a click.  Today, we look at the top 3 cloud PaaS providers that you can use for your next personal, business or enterprise app.


Why Cloud PaaS Providers?

You might be interested to know why Cloud PaaS (Platform-as-a-service) has become a highly popular choice for running your apps instead of the traditional hosting. Here’s why?

  1. Easy Scalability, just scale with a range bar in seconds
  2. Flexible pricing – Pay As you Go, by the hour, second
  3. Separate components like databases, servers etc. handled separately.
  4. On demand resources, accustomed to high or low traffic
  5. Security left to the Cloud PaaS providers, risk free.
  6. Great level of support
  7. Distributed network of servers allows better web app performance
  8. Support for a variety of server side technologies

Here are the 3 PaaS provider we think you should check out!



AppFog, accessed at is a great Cloud PaaS provider. It enables you to host your apps in a second, and with its great UI, managing everything is super easy. One of the great features of AppFog is its large support for a variety of server side technologies like PHP, .NET, Java, Node.js, Ruby, Erlan – and databases like MySQL, Redis, MongoDB, and PostegresSQL etc.

The AppFog uses Cloud Foundry technology developed by VMWare to build its cloud computing infrastructure and its servers are hosted in variety of places with the ability to instances on EC2, Rackspace and more. AppFog uses the Ruby gem af to push apps from your computer to their cloud platform. But what gets more exciting is their iPhone app, which allows you monitor, manage and scale your apps with complete mobility. Besides this, AppFog has a great level of general support.



Another popular, and an older player in the Cloud PaaS market is Heroku, accessed at Heroku is so popular that Facebook has partnered with them hence Facebook apps can be hosted, deployed and run from Heroku directly. Heroku’s platform is very mature and allows you to add add-ons to your apps. This is a unique selling proposition of Heroku is highly favored in the industry today.

These add-ons can be for monitoring, security, media, utilities, caching, analytics, email, SMS, queuing, logging, search and data stores. Moreover, Heroku supports a range of technologies such as Java, Ruby, Node.js, Scala, Python, Clojure and Scala.  However, besides Facebook apps, Heroku doesn’t have PHP functionality that makes many developers go the other way. This is simply because of PHP as a backend powerhouse, powering a majority of the World Wide Web.



PagodaBox is a relatively new Cloud PaaS provider, accessed at PagodaBox markets itself is a PHP specialist. This is proven by the fact that PagodaBox features popular PHP projects like PyroCMS, WordPress, Kohana and CodeIgniter for easy 1-click installations.

PagodaBox can be easily deployed from git version control technologies like Github, which makes it easy to pull and push your app data. As it’s a PHP only PaaS provider, much of its architecture is well suited to existing PHP developers, who will find managing, scaling and deploying apps smoother.

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About Ali Gajani

I’m a science geek, aspiring blogger, thinker, entrepreneur and freelancer. I live in Sheffield, UK, have three amazing pets named iPad, iPhone and iMac and I love life. You can find me on to know more about myself!