Software as Service (SaaS) is one of the Cloud computing model where the customer interacts only with the user interface of the application. The underlying platform and operating system details are completely transparent in this case for the customer. At a higher level, the cloud providers in a SaaS model can offer applications suites that cover a broad range of customer businesses and offer them as cloud services, hence the trend Anything as a Service (XaaS).
Software as a Service is a software distribution model in which applications are hosted by a vendor or service provider and made available to customers over a network, typically the Internet. Shortly, in the SaaS model software is deployed as a hosted service and accessed over the Internet.SaaS is developed under the Pay-per-use model.
SaaS refers to on-demand services where software are hosted in the Cloud. It follows software delivery model and is usualy accesed using a client-server delivery model where the client is usualy a web browser. SaaS has become a delivery model for most business applications. SaaS has been incorporated into the strategy of all leading enterprise software companies.
The mai challenge of SaaS is the integration of different services (offered by different Cloud providers) used by customers in service workflows. The integration process is both costly and complex.Other challenges for SaaS are:
- Plan (minimize financial risks; organizational changes; effective sales channels; pricing approach; ideal target segment).
- Build (architecture options; cost of re-architecture approach; technical expertise).
- Validate (generate demand; increase awareness; low cost; provide a model).
- Early (generate demand; increase awareness; low cost; high level of reliability and support; application and data security).
- High Grow (Scale; QoS; high availability; focus on resources; application and data security).
- Maturity (competition; high availability; focus on resources; QoS; scale; application and data security).
Some examples of cloud service providers for SaaS include: GoogleApps, Oracle On Demand, SalesForce.com, Windows Azure (e.g. SQL Azure).
The comparison between SaaS, PaaS and IaaS is presented in Figure 1.
- Cloud computing: New challenge to the entire computer industry (Authors: P. Mathur N. Nishchal Published In: 1st International Conference on Parallel Distributed and Grid Computing Publication Date: 2010)
- Saas - Software as a Service (book) (Authors: Kevin Roebuck Publication Date: 2011)