Monday, 15 April 2013

Software as a Service

Software as a Service

Software as a Service, SaaS is short, a partial area of ​​cloud computing. The SaaS model is based on the principle that the software and IT infrastructure to be operated by an external IT service provider and used by the customer as a service. 

For using only a PC with internet access and the Internet connection to the external IT service provider is required. Access to the software is usually implemented through a Web browser. For the use and operation of the service pays lodge a use-dependent (usually per user per month) fee. Through the SaaS model, the service users are spared the acquisition and operating costs partially. The service provider takes over the complete IT administration and other services such as maintenance and updates. For this purpose, the entire IT infrastructure, including all administrative tasks is outsourced, and the service users can concentrate on their core business.

It SaaS models are given more and more importance. The market research firm Gartner predicted for 2011 a turnover of 12.1 billion U.S. dollars. This represents an increase of 20.7 percent over the previous year (2010: $ 10 billion). The North American market here represents the largest urban demand (2011: $ 7.7 billion).

Comparison of the traditional software license models with Software as a Service

The traditional software licensing model

In the traditional license model, the IT infrastructure, the development of solutions and software together constitute a complex, expensive and risky investment, the customer buys the software and thus has the license and the right to use the software. The vendor provides the customer an installation package. To install a complete IT infrastructure (hardware, operating system, database, etc.) is required. After successful installation of the software is configured to meet business requirements. With the completion of the software implementation the company takes over the complete operation of the IT infrastructure and related IT tasks.

The license purchase is usually associated with a service contract, which in turn contains incalculable costs. These include the installation of new releases and correction of software defects.

Software as a Service

The basic idea of ​​SaaS is very similar to an energy supply company. The customer obtains its current demand on the power outlet. It manages the customer does not own generators in the back yard, but the energy supplier is the work necessary to produce electricity. The customer only uses the stream and a usage-based fee paid for this.

Described the basic idea can be equally applied to the SaaS model. The service provider provides the business (eg an ERP system) or editorial software (such as a content management system for technical documentation) prepared in a data center, that operates and provides technical assistance. He takes all the necessary components of a data center: networking, storage, databases, application servers, Web servers, and disaster recovery and backup services. In addition, other operational services, such as authentication, availability, identity management, production control, patch management, activity monitoring, software upgrades and adjustments are made. The service recipient does not install their own software. For using only a PC with internet access and the Internet connection to the service provider is required. Access to the software is implemented using a web browser. For the use and operation of the service recipient pays a usage fee.

In essence, the models described above differ in the fact that the IT infrastructure and IT tasks are no longer operated by the service recipient, but by the service provider. The service is no longer a buyer pays the entire software license, but a monthly, per-use fee. One goal of software as a service is that high investment costs for the IT infrastructure (eg, hardware, memory, etc.) and IT tasks (eg, software maintenance, updates, etc.) can be saved.

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