How can modern cloud integration technologies help your business?

Tylor Bunting
May 16, 2023
min read

When building or converting your business into a digitally native entity, it is imperative to understand the concepts of integration. Enabling information to flow through all applications harmoniously results in seamless customer experiences and is a cornerstone of building digitally native businesses.

Integration services are more complex than ever in today’s world! Customers use multiple applications to perform various tasks that require information to be replicated across different channels. Organisations are faced with the daunting challenge of moving from on-premise technologies to the cloud to achieve a seamless workflow.

Fortunately, cloud integration technologies are making the integration and automation of processes easier! An increasing number of organisations are switching to utilising cloud integration Platforms-as-a-Service (iPaaS) options to solve their business integration needs.

Integration Platforms-as-a-Service (iPaaS)

Modern cloud integration services (iPaaS) such as Azure Integration Services are favourable and profitable to businesses because of the functionality they provide to connect cloud and on-premise applications.

Grouping cloud technologies through connectors makes it easier to manage complex systems for an enterprise. Azure Integration Services allows scalability in its ability to handle colossal data files, user load, and messages in real-time.

In addition, communications between these systems are improved due to the serverless messaging ecosystem, and business agility increases due to access to the latest products and services through a fully integrated cloud stack specific to PaaS, SaaS, and IaaS.

Azure Integration Services

Azure Integration Services is a serverless iPaaS offering by Microsoft for mission-critical integration on enterprise and S&M business levels. Azure is a modern cloud-based integration offering that provides developers and organisations with the tools needed to easily build secure, scalable and lightning-fast application integration solutions.

Azure Services are trusted by 80% of Fortune 500 companies.”

Source: What is Azure?

Azure offers key components that each provide different integration functionalities for developers and organisations to choose and apply as they desire:

API Management

API Management is a centralised multi-cloud management system that handles diversified cloud and on-premise APIs while handling cross-cutting concerns like authentication, caching, and throttling. A well-managed API can be connected to existing Service Bus, Logic Apps, and Azure Functions, unlocking data and services’ potential.

In today’s world, services are exposed as a modern RESTful API built on open source tools like SwaggerHub, where you can design, document, and consume APIs. Developed APIs can then be deployed to Azure API Management to integrate internal, partner, or other business systems.

API Management also provides a developer portal for developers to use and request access to API. This provides the functionality for users inside and outside of the organisation to access the APIs, promoting innovation within the business and open-source ecosystem.

Logic Apps

Azure Logic App is a serverless automated workflow tool that implements digitised business processes. It allows the creation of automated business logic without writing a single line of code.

It uses 200 or more connectors and logic objects, each with different and straightforward functionality. Logic App provides cloud connectors for services such as Office 365, Salesforce, Blob Storage, Dynamic 365, SQL Server, Twitter, FTP, and SharePoint.

Saved in JSON format undercover, it makes Logic Apps easier to fit into existing DevOps environments, and a developer can modify or add a new workflow to existing processes.

Azure Functions

Developers and organisations often run a series of critical events. Whether building a web API, responding to database changes, or managing a message queue, every application needs code to run it.

Azure Functions provides the mechanism to create these code blocks and host them using “compute-on-demand” serverless infrastructure. The Azure Function solutions can be built using a variety of different programming languages (more languages being added regularly), such as:

  • C#
  • Javascript
  • F#
  • Java
  • Powershell
  • Python
  • Typescript

Azure Functions integrates with other cloud services to provide complex feature execution like processing file uploads through Blob Storage, managing messaging from Service Bus, and running database changes through CosmosDB and SignalR to respond to data in real-time.

Azure Functions and Logic Apps are often compared as they both perform the exact role of “integration computation.” The primary difference between the two tools is that Azure Functions follows the code-first approach to building integrations, and Logic Apps follows the design-first approach.

Service Bus

Service Bus is integral and one of the old and robust parts of Azure Integration Services. It is an asynchronous, message-based system that ensures communication between cloud applications, on-premise applications, and other Azure services. Similar products include technologies such as MSMQ and RabbitMQ.

Service Bus provides strict queue semantics that allows first-in, first-out ordering of the messages and topic/subscription creation where a receiver can subscribe to a topic and receive relevant filtered messages.

Event Grid

Azure Event Grid triggers an event handler when a specific event/action occurs. Instead of polling for messages, a receiver can set up an Event that triggers at a particular time interval to check if there are any messages in the queue.

Event Grid is a fast and straightforward way to send events or actions that can also be triggered by Azure Service Bus or Azure Logic Apps. Event Grid is more scalable than Service Bus, triggering up to 10,000,000 events per second in a single Azure region. Event Grid is a cost-effective service as it runs only when the action is triggered.

Competitor Comparison

Despite being a new offering in the market, Azure Integration Services is setting a benchmark as a leader in the iPaaS domain.

Compared to cloud integration services offered by Mulesoft, Azure Integration Services is proven to have excellent features for scalable and easy integration suitable for any business size.

Azure has an impressive reputation for its praiseworthy technical support, a large base of peer user community, and effective pricing. When compared to Mulesoft, Azure Integration Services offer a seamless automated workflow and unrivalled ease of deployment in a critical business environment.

Analysing the Gartner peer reviews, it’s pretty clear that Azure Integration Services beats Mulesoft in almost every aspect including technical, user-friendliness, and maintenance. Even though Mulesoft is a mature product, Azure has been embraced and appreciated by the business community all around the globe.


Azure Integration Service is one of the best modern cloud integration platforms available today. Even when compared to more established integration services such as Mulesoft, Azure confidently handles a full range of business needs with compelling capabilities of developing tools like Visual Studio and Github.

Azure Integration Services has established itself as a market leader and has set an outstanding benchmark for performance in the industry. If you would like to know more about how iPaaS and Azure Integration Services can help you to digitise your business, let the team at Cognitive Automation Labs know and they will be more than happy to help!

Tylor Bunting