What Is CPaaS? Communication Platform as-a-Service


Quick definition: Communication Platform as-a-Service (CPaaS) is a cloud-native solution for adding communications capabilities to a software application. Using Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), developers can integrate a vendor’s communication platform with their own software to enable specific functionality like SMS, voice, and video.

CPaaS solutions are most valuable to businesses that don’t have the IT infrastructure, personnel, or time to develop and maintain their own solutions. Using a CPaaS vendor allows organizations to rapidly incorporate secure, scalable communications systems without investing in additional infrastructure or staff, and it significantly reduces time to market.

While CPaaS has a broad range of applications from telemedicine visits to appointment reminders and two-step authentication, it’s also critical for IoT manufacturers, where devices are often mobile and global.

CPaaS and the Internet of Things

IoT devices can’t function without communication. Whether they communicate periodically or on-demand, IoT devices need to transmit and receive information from other devices and applications to perform the processes they were designed for. These interactions rely on layers of network protocols.

Keeping your devices connected

IoT communication depends on connectivity. Interactions between IoT devices and applications rely on layers of network protocols, each of which have its own strengths and weaknesses. As a CPaaS provider dedicated to IoT, guaranteeing connectivity is an integral part of emnify’s role in facilitating communication.

Rather than building new network infrastructure everywhere or limiting connectivity to our own IT infrastructure, we leverage cellular connectivity and our cloud-native platform to provide truly global IoT communications. Our SIM cards enable your devices to connect to more than 540 networks in over 180 countries, utilizing cellular infrastructure from the Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) that are most relevant to each deployment.

Thanks to our built-in network redundancy, your devices always connect to the network with the best signal, and if a network ever goes down, you’ll always have a backup.

Securing your communication

Since IoT communication takes place on a network, it’s vulnerable to being intercepted or manipulated. You don’t want just anyone to communicate with your devices, and you don’t want your customers’ data to be stolen. IoT security is a weighty responsibility. But with an IoT CPaaS provider like emnify, you don’t have to bear that burden alone.

We don’t simply ensure that your devices can communicate. We keep that communication secure by encrypting your transmissions, preventing access from unauthorized devices, limiting your device’s network access to the functions and connections it actually needs, and much more.

Paying as you go

For IoT manufacturers, a huge advantage of integrating with a CPaaS provider like emnify is that you only pay for the data you use. Traditional MNOs require long-term contracts to use their network infrastructure, but with a CPaas provider, you can add or remove communication services as needed. This makes it easy to scale up and down your operating expenses with your deployments.

CPaaS vs. UCaaS

Spend much time exploring communication platforms, and you’re bound to hear about another SaaS-based communication solution: Unified Communications as-a-Service (UCaaS). There are enough similarities between UCaaS and CPaaS to cause some confusion, but they’re best-suited for completely different situations.

CPaaS providers are ideal for businesses that are developing their own app and want to enable communications capabilities.

UCaaS is a communications solution for businesses that want to unify their disparate communication channels: calls, video conferencing, messaging, auto attendants, etc. It brings all these separate channels into one place and allows employees to access them all remotely.

Learn more about CPaaS and IoT

emnify is the world’s first CPaaS provider specializing in IoT. Deploy anywhere in the world, and we facilitate secure IoT communications with guaranteed uptime of 99.99%. Our platform fully integrates with your IoT tech stack, brings your devices online, secures your communications, and enables you to operate your applications on a global scale.

Get in touch with our IoT experts

Discover how emnify can help you grow your business and talk to one of our IoT consultants today!