It seems that more and more things that used to be products are now services. Nowadays, they put the acronym ‘aaS’ (as a Service) after just about everything to do with computing. These offerings allow the user access to endpoints which are generally driven by Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) but for everyday use, they are typically controlled with a web console or web browser.

The most recognizable are:

Hardware (Haas)
Software (Saas)
Infrastructure (IaaS)
Platform (PaaS)
Integration Platform (iPaaS)
and on and on and on…

Now there’s .

What does NaaS mean?

Network as a Service is technically not new – in some form or another the concept has been a component of cloud computing since the beginning, but now it’s all grown up and deserves its own acronym.

A business can choose to invest a healthy five figures in putting a physical network in place, or they can just avail themselves of the use of one ‘as a service’ – akin to paying for the milk without buying the cow.

The massive transition to a largely remote workforce has caused a quantum leap in cloud computing, and providers have sought better ways for businesses to experience an easy and flexible experience with the cloud. The early days when a company had to send an IT services employee through extensive training in order to use Microsoft Azure are all but gone – relegated to huge companies  with large in-house IT support departments.

Cloud services providers have responded to the growth in businesses with many employees who work from home by upping the range and scope of ‘as a Service’ offerings. NaaS as a whole benefits from the advances made in its main 3 segments:

IaaS Networking Services
Infrastructure as a Service is offered by Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud and Amazon Web Services (AWS). Taken by itself, IaaS relies on the customer to maintain and manage the virtualization technologies and servers that make up the key infrastructure networking components – much the way the original Microsoft Azure relied heavily on customer involvement.

Managed NaaS
In this example, a 3rd party, such as a Managed Services Provider (MSP) or telecom company deliver the networking hardware and software to the business customer and provided on a monthly subscription or retainer basis. The responsibility for maintaining and managing the client’s network stays with the Managed Services Provider or telecom service.

Enterprise NaaS
This is the ‘One Ring to rule them all’. Typically it falls within the realm of Managed IT Services – usually through a 3rd party - sometimes offered through the cloud host (which is extremely limited in its scope of services and responsibility). This pulls all the other ‘aaSes’ into its own orbit, incorporating everything under its own umbrella and creating a true ‘turn-key’ experience for the business customer, with little or no subscriber management.

What are the benefits of NaaS?

Primarily, it relieves the end user enterprise and their in-house IT support or outsourced IT services provider from buying or managing a physical network. Essentially NaaS is a component of fully contained platforms such as Microsoft 365. Once, not too long ago, most of these types of components had to be instituted separately, and then integrated into network operations. It’s akin to the difference of making a sandwich or buying a sandwich.

While an independent NaaS provider offers some cloud capabilities, Microsoft 365 offers much more – including Office 365.

Whichever platform you choose, you will benefit from:

Lower Overall Costs: Maintaining and upgrading a physical network is a huge and recurring capital expense – one which many business owners put off until the problems caused by old, underpowered hardware become a drag on productivity.

Maximum Performance and Productivity: When your network, either physical or virtual, is humming quickly along, worker productivity is a straight, uninterrupted line from the start of project to the finish.

System Optimization: This is something every Managed IT Services provider continues to tweak, making adjustments to ensure network speed and reliability remain at top operating levels to account for factors such as new or upgraded software and increased system traffic. Increased network uptime equals increased productivity.

Better Cybersecurity: While a physical network should have the best next-generation security measures in place, a NaaS provider will generally update these and more enhanced measures as a matter of routine.

Enhanced Proactive Maintenance: Any IT support worth its salt will be on top of predictive maintenance, but many companies do not even know how good their IT provider really is – until a disaster occurs. With a NaaS provider, this function is easy and automatic.


As noted, NaaS is not new, but as a standalone service, rather than a component that ran beneath the surface of other offerings, it has come into its own. It is one of a number of ways to reach a similar goal: Putting all of your computing in the cloud. With all the available avenues of approach, the smart business owner or administrator should do their homework to make sure they make the right choice for what their business needs. This is one of those areas where offerings sound similar but are not.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does Network Service work?
NaaS is simply the rental or subscription from a 3rd party to provide a cloud-based network for businesses that wish to do away with their local network. The service provides the maintenance and security for the network.

Is VPN a NaaS?
They bear similarities, but no. NaaS is an enhanced extension of the VPN model. NaaS removes many VPN limitations, although a VPN and IP network would still be present in a NaaS-based system. A VPN simply manages traffic, while NaaS is ‘application specific’, meaning each user and each application can be treated differently according to their needs.

Who offers NaaS?
As a standalone service, there are variations between the offerings of the top providers. Enterprise Networking Planet provides a breakdown of the best for Enterprise networks HERE.

How NaaS is delivered?
The end-user simply logs on to a web portal and is granted access to the API (Application Programming Interface) and can then customize the route.

How would NaaS work for you?

The best way to advise how NaaS would work for your business is to take a look at what you have now. IT Support LA offers a FREE, no-risk network and security assessment to all companies in the Greater Los Angeles area with a minimum of 10 computers and 1 server. No strings, no obligation. Once we deliver the free report, we can make knowledgeable recommendations.

Just fill out the form on this page or call us at: 818-805-0909