Why add UPWARD to a live Magento PWA site?

I’ve been hacking my way through PWA Studio and UPWARD, mostly trying to build React PWAs (connected to Magento) without using the tools provided by PWA Studio, so using generic technology like Redux, Apollo Client and Apollo Server (with Express).

Now, when playing around with UPWARD, I understand that it is handy to have UPWARD running together with Venia in development: You’ll get a nice hostname and SSL to play with service worker and to skip CORS issues. But other than that, there doesn’t seem much added value in using UPWARD, because it doesn’t have state (so no middleware-based caching). And out of the box, the Venia setup doesn’t require other services except for Magento (so that the proxy-feature of UPWARD isn’t needed). Also note that even in development, CORS-issues could be avoided with simple modules like mine (https://github.com/yireo-training/magento2-corshack).

What would be the added value of keeping UPWARD in the Venia configuration when pushing the PWA to production? I’ve seen some other StackExchange mentions around how to push Venia to a live environment, but they seem to be repeating the assumption that UPWARD is needed. Am I overseeing some additional benefit of UPWARD?

To put it differently, I’ve been playing with modifying the apiBase constant in Venia’s index.js and replacing it with a regular Magento instance and this seems to run fine. But why wouldn’t I make this adjustment?