Meet Catalyst—Zoho's full stack serverless developer platform

We're thrilled to announce the launch of our new serverless platform for developers, Zoho Catalyst. As developers, we want to focus on building the best experience for our users, but often end up spending our time on operational details like provisioning, monitoring, scaling, patching, logging, and updating servers. Catalyst frees you from all this. With Zoho Catalyst, you can deploy applications and microservices at scale, while we take care of everything else—drastically reducing your development cycle and operational costs.

At Zoho we've launched 45+ apps over the last 15 years, apps that serve more than 45 million users. To accomplish this we've built the entire stack—from our own data centers and servers, to high level services like authentication, machine learning, and notifications—all in-house. With Catalyst you get access to the expertise we've honed over the years in handling cloud infrastructure. 

Zoho Catalyst provides three major components:

  • Backend as a Service

  • Function as a Service

  • Catalyst services

Backend as a Service

Catalyst provides scalable backend components, like relational database, file storage, and caching, so that you can quickly store and retrieve data and files related to your application without worrying about configuration.

Function as a Service

Function as a Service (FaaS) is a serverless way of executing code in a modularized fashion. Catalyst lets you deploy functions written in Java and Node.js—with support for more languages coming in the future—without worrying about provisioning and scaling app servers or containers.

Command Line Tools For Zoho Catalyst

Catalyst provides powerful command line tools so you can build, test, and deploy functions. Catalyst also provides two flavors of FaaS: Catalyst functions and app logic.

Catalyst services

Essential app services like sign-up and authentication, push notifications, search indexing, and emailing are provided out of the box in Catalyst, so that you can supercharge your development process. 

Catalyst also provides a variety of AI and ML services, like OCR (Optical Character Recognition) and object detection through Zia, Zoho's AI-powered assistant. Even more features will be added in the future, as Catalyst continues to roll out Zia features that are already available in existing Zoho products.

In addition to everything above, Catalyst also provides powerful SDKs for iOS, Android, and the web, so you can create fully customized applications at scale.

Mobile and Web apps created using Zoho Catalyst SDKs
Mobile and Web apps created using Zoho Catalyst SDKs 

What can you build with Catalyst?

Zoho Catalyst helps you build a variety of applications and microservices without needing to worry about the backend infrastructure. Here are some common ways people use Zoho Catalyst:

  • Building fully customized web and mobile applications

  • Building REST APIs that can serve as the integration for various applications, on both web and mobile

  • Building data processing pipelines that run in the background as a microservice for things like data migration and data analysis

  • Running scheduled jobs at set intervals of time, to perform tasks such ascleaning databases, analyzing logs, and more

 The Zoho Catalyst advantage

  • Rapid application development - Zoho Catalyst enables developers to quickly deploy applications at scale without worrying about managing servers. This drastically improves time to market.

  • Near-zero server maintenance - Catalyst takes care of all the maintenance work, like provisioning, logging, patching, and keeping hardware and software updated.

  • Elastic scaling - Catalyst scales your applications automatically as requests come in, so you don't have to scale your applications manually.

  • Pay per use - Elastic scaling and pay per use go hand in hand, as you'll only be paying for what you used—not the resources that were idle.

  • Security and privacy - At Zoho, we take privacy and security very seriously, which is why we run our own servers. And by running your applications on Zoho's infrastructure, you inherit all the effort we've put in to keeping our servers secure and private.

Who can benefit from Zoho Catalyst?

  • Independent developers looking to create fully customized web or mobile applications.
  • Systems integrators looking to run one-off or responsive microservices that help you integrate products or systems.
  • IT teams looking to modernize parts of their applications through the latest serverless architecture.
  • Startups looking to ship software applications fast, at scale.

So go and take it for a spin! We can't wait to see the incredible applications that you build on Zoho Catalyst.

Feel free to reach out to us at


1 Replies to Meet Catalyst—Zoho's full stack serverless developer platform

  1. Congrats on making a big leap into the cloud infrastructure space. Sounds like an exciting offering. Since this goes head to head with some of the big players out there (MSFT, Amazon, Google), would love to hear how Zoho’a stack is similar or different to those. I.e, as a developer, when should I look at Catalyst vs one of the existing giants

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