By: Gigaom
Hey devs, need some hand holding? Heroku adds premium consulting services for you
So you're building an important application on Heroku's Platform-as-a-Service but need some help configuring it? Now you can now get that. For a fee.

You need help scoping out a new architecture for an application? Or maybe some for-real 24 X 7 support for that application once it’s built? Now Heroku is offering a premium tier of paid services you can tap into, provided you build and host that application on Heroku’s Platform as a Service.

An eagle-eyed colleague (thanks Derrick) spotted the Heroku business critical applications page on Tuesday and sure enough, it’s a new offering that goes beyond the all-in-one Heroku services that developers get when they put up their credit card for basic PaaS services. The new services include one-on-one consulting, problem support escalation all based on a custom pricing model.

An exec with a rival PaaS vendor said these new paid options are “right out of the Salesforce handbook for how to monetize cloud.” bought Heroku, which was then a Ruby-oriented PaaS, three years ago. Since then Heroku has added support for several more languages.

PaaSes like Heroku, AppFog, Google App Engine, and Microsoft Azure, target developers who want to build applications without sweating all the underlying infrastructure stuff. But, to date, the category has struggled for acceptance beyond that demographic. Classic IT types are usually not wild about running company applications on someone else’s platform so they often push to move the finished application back inside the firewall. Higher level services like these might appeal to  corporate developers and their IT counterparts.

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