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Kanishq Baweja

BBA (Semester 6)

Software as a Service (SaaS)


SAAS Software as a service Software as a Service (SaaS) 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.
SaaS is becoming an increasingly prevalent delivery model as underlying technologies that
support Web services and serviceoriented architecture (SOA) mature and new developmental
approaches, such as Ajax, become popular. Meanwhile, broadband service has become
increasingly available to support user access from more areas around the world.
SaaS is closely related to the ASP (application service provider) and on demand computing
software delivery models.
The hosted application management (hosted AM) model is similar to ASP: a provider hosts
commercially available software for customers and delivers it over the Web. In the software on
demand model, the provider gives customers network-based access to a single copy of an
application created specifically for SaaS distribution.
Benefits of the SaaS model include:

Easier administration
Automatic updates and patch management
Compatibility: all users will have the same version of software
Easier collaboration, for the same reason
Global accessibility

The traditional model of software distribution, in which software is purchased for and installed
on personal computers, is sometimes referred to as software as a product Software is important in
todays business world, where software applications can help us track shipments across multiple
countries, manage large inventories, train employees, and even help us form good working
relationships with customers.
For decades, companies have run software on their own internal infrastructures or computer
networks. In recent years, traditional software license purchases have begun to seem antiquated,
as many vendors and customers have migrated to a software as a service business model.
Software as a service, or 'SaaS', is a software application delivery model by which an enterprise
vendor develops a web-based software application, and then hosts and operates that application
over the Internet for use by its customers. Customers do not need to buy software licenses or

additional infrastructure equipment, and typically only pay monthly fees (also referred to as
annuity payments) for using the software. It is important to note that SaaS typically encapsulates
enterprise as opposed to consumer-oriented web-hosted software, which is generally known as
web 2.0. According to a leading research firm, the SaaS market reached $6.3B in 2006; still a
small fraction of the over $300B licensed software industry.
However, growth in SaaS since 2000 has averaged 26% CAGR, while licensed software growth
has remained relatively flat. Demand for SaaS is being driven by real business needs namely
its ability to drive down IT-related costs, decrease deployment times, and foster innovation. As
SaaS adoption continues to accelerate, traditional software application vendors or ISVs could
face fierce competition from SaaS upstarts looking to steal market share.
Over time, they could see their existing customers defect, and prospective new customers balk at
their product delivery options (or lack thereof) resulting in lower revenues, operating margins,
and profits. Alternatively, ISV's could adopt SaaS models -- hence risking the cannibalization of
their own software license revenue. Consequently, the disruption of ISVs offerings would hurt
the demand for technology software service/consulting firms, who earn profits by integrating,
customizing, maintaining, and upgrading traditional licensed software. On the other hand, pure
play SaaS software companies, third - party application hosts, and Internet technology providers
all stand to gain with accelerated SaaS adoption.
SaaS is faster and a cost effective way to getting implemented. There are no hardware,
implementation or acquisition costs involved to run the application from the customer's side. It's
the responsibility of the SaaS vendor to manage and run the application with utmost security,
performance and reliability Since customers pay a subscription, they have immediate access to
the new features and functionality. Unlike traditional softwares where upgrades would happen
once a year or once in 6 months (with the vendor coming to your office with a CD), the SaaS
vendor continuously pushes new updates, fixes to the application, which is immediately
accessible by the customer. This reduces the length of time it takes a customer to recognize value
from the software. Since the software application is delivered as a service, its important for the
vendor to focus on customer service and experience. Since this is on a subscription model, the
vendor is judged on a month-month basis and the pressure to innovate or risk losing business is
greater.
SaaS can be used by Windows, Linux, or Mac users, providing true platform independence over
the Internet.

Some features of SaaS


1. Scalability
Scaling the application means maximizing concurrency and using application resources
more efficiently-for example, optimizing locking duration, statelessness, sharing pooled

resources such as threads and network connections, caching reference data, and
partitioning large databases.
2. Multi-tenant efficient
Multi-tenancy may be the most significant paradigm shift that an architect accustomed to
designing isolated, single-tenant applications has to make. For example, when a user at
one company accesses customer information by using a CRM application service, the
application instance that the user connects to may be accommodating users from dozens,
or even hundreds, of other companies-all completely abstracted to any of the users.
3. Configurable
if a single application instance on a single server has to accommodate users from several
different companies at once, you cant simply write custom code to customize the enduser experience-anything you do to customize the application for one customer will
change the application for other customers as well. Instead of customizing the application
in the traditional sense, then, each customer uses metadata to configure the way the
application appears and behaves for its users. The challenge for the SaaS architect is to
ensure that the task of configuring applications is simple and easy for the customers,
without incurring extra development or operation costs for each configuration there can
be four ways of hosting an application on the SaaS architecture. These are also called as
the maturity models of SaaS.
4. Ad-hoc/Custom
It is similar to the traditional application service provider (ASP) model of software
delivery, dating back to the 1990s. Each customer has its own customized version of the
hosted application, and runs its own instance of the application on the hosts servers.
5. Network or Online Access
SaaS is an online application or at least, a network based application. Users will never
need any installation in their local gadgets which is connected to the local network or the
internet. Usually, the application is launched through a browser which could provide
access not only to the application but additional services from the vendor.
6. Centralized Management
Control, monitoring and update could be done in a single location. The businesses that
maintain the application will never need to manually make some changes in the local
gadget but would provide improvement instead on the online application.
7. Powerful Communication Features

Software as a Service is not only based on the fact that it provides functions for online
processing, it also has powerful communication features. The mere fact that SaaS is often
used online provides a strong backbone for Instant Messaging or even voice calls (VOIP).

Disadvantages of SaaS

Powerful Internet Connection required


Although connection online is available almost everywhere, the rate of connection
is never the same. Some areas cant provide strong internet connection and SaaS
(as an online application) will have to load everything in the browser.

Increased Security Risk


Attacks are highly likely if everything is launched online. This is probably the
most challenging part in SaaS and in Cloud Computing industry. SaaS has
increase security concerns compared to other platforms because of its consistent
interaction with different user.

Load Balancing Feature


One of the challenges the business would face in cloud computing and all SaaS
applications is load balancing. Although industry giants offer load balancing, it
will still require consistent monitoring from businesses.

Examples

Salesforce.com
Salesforce.com is a cloud computing and social enterprise software-as-a-service
(SaaS) provider based in San Francisco. Of its cloud platforms and applications,
the company is best known for its Salesforce customer relationship management
(CRM) product, which is composed of Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, Marketing
Cloud, Force.com, Chatter and Work.com. Sales Cloud manages contact
information and integrates social media and real-time customer collaboration
through Chatter. Service Cloud includes a call center-like case tracking feature
and a social networking plug-in for conversation and analytics. Marketing Cloud
offers Radian6, a social media monitoring and marketing application. Force.com,
the company's platform-as-a-service (PaaS) product, allows software developers
to create Salesforce.com add-on applications. Work.com offers Rypple, a social
human resource (HR) performance management platform. In addition to its
products and platforms, Salesforce.com created AppExchange, a custom

application building and sharing platform. The company also has consulting,
deployment and training services.

Unlike most SaaS companies which are B2B, LinkedIn is a B2C2B company.
LinkedIn attracts hundreds of millions of consumers to post resumes online and
sells this data and access to its audience to advertisers and recruiters and
salespeople. The intrinsic data and people network effects of the business create
reinforcing feedback cycles that have helped the business achieve tremendous
revenue growth. And unlike most SaaS companies who offer a single product,
LinkedIn offers three: Talent Solutions, Premium Subscriptions and Marketing
Tools. Recruiters buy Talent Solutions to find, connect with and acquire talented
people. Salespeople buy Premium Subscriptions to network and search on the
platform. And many different types of businesses buy ads to market their products
to LinkedIns audience.

Google Docs is a productivity suite that is free for anyone to use. Creating a
Google account is free. All you have to do is log in to google.com/docs and you
instantly have access to a powerful word processor, spreadsheet application, and
presentation creator. These online services provided by Google are managed
directly from the web browser and require zero installation. You can access your
Google Docs from any computer or mobile device with a web browser.