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Next Up, iPaaS

MuleSoft has rolled out a public beta of Mule iON, a cloud-based Integration Platform-as-a-Service

Advertised as an integration platform for the cloud, web and enterprise, MuleSoft has rolled out a public beta of Mule iON, a cloud-based iPaaS or newfangled Integration Platform-as-a-Service.

It’s supposed to be the world’s first iPaaS for integrating and orchestrating cloud-ified SaaS applications with on-premise systems and it’s built on Mule’s applications, services and data integration technology. It will be competing against the IBM gobbled-up Cast Iron and the Dell-acquired Boomi and their point-to-point integration schemes.

iON is supposed to be the simplest way for SaaS providers and integrators to on-board new customers, letting them build domain-specific integration applications that solve the integration challenge in a scalable and repeatable way. Integration is after all supposed to be the primary issue thwarting cloud adoption and MuleSoft thinks iON is gonna “change the face of cloud computing” and solve the burgeoning cloud silo problem.

The company quotes Gartner as saying “an entirely new sector will emerge to address this issue, defined as integration platform as a service (iPaaS)” and predicting that 35% of all large and mid-size organizations worldwide will be using one or more iPaaS offerings in some form by 2016.

iON uses a graphical design environment to build integration applications, leveraging off-the-shelf cloud connectors and deploying them in a click to Mule iON.

It’s targeting SaaS vendors and system integrators thinking domain-specific integration applications, often a mix of on-premise and third-party SaaS applications. The widgetry should appeal to smaller companies because all the load balancing, availability, failover and scaling issues are resolved automatically.

It’s supposed to do SaaS (like Salesforce) to on-premise systems (like databases and file systems); cloud-to-cloud data synchronization that breaks down the data silos in the cloud; on-premise event streaming to SaaS applications or social media platforms (like Twitter, Yammer and Chatter); and expose on-premise data through SaaS portals via a REST API to unlock business data for external use.

The widgetry uses Tcat, the enterprise Tomcat server.

An open source company, MuleSoft claims 1.5 million downloads and 300 paying customers for its Java-based enterprise ESB. The open source middleware is used by 2,500 organizations in production including Walmart.com, Nokia, Nestlé, Honeywell and DHL, as well as five of the world’s top 10 banks and over 35% of the Global 500.

By the way, it appears the 200-strong Mule iON private beta was running on Amazon when it went down and didn’t have a problem staying up, according to MuleSoft founder and CTO Ross Mason.

It’ll take MuleSoft a couple of months to collect the feedback it’s looking for from the public beta. It plans to make a free developer version available using Amazon. It won’t be full-blown and won’t have SLAs. Figure build and test use and a limit of a thousand transactions.

The company’s still working on iON’s commercial pricing.

The integration market is supposed to be worth $206 billion according to Forrester.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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