Auto-hosted apps are only available for SharePoint online (office 365), it bundles and provisions at each installation an azure web site(and eventually a sql azure database).
That made hosting, tenancy management (isolating customers’ data) and authenticationway easier because most of the configuration part was automated.
We’ve been wondering how these apps were going to evolve for a while. Indeed SharePoint 2013 came out more than a year ago in production on office 365 and we still were not able to:
Sell this kind of apps on the store
Have a detailed billing
Manage backups, scalability, redundancy…(even from the azure console)
Microsoft recently announced the deprecation of this app model. This is what it means: stop building this kind of applications, migrate your existing apps to the provider hosted model and expect a de-provisioning of the currently deployed apps for the end of 2014.
For more information here is a link
What’s next? Microsoft should soon make new announcements about a new app model ;-)