Thursday, July 19, 2007

On Demand Software; SaaS; Software plus Service; Hosted Software

Having touched upon SOA, we now move on to the next big shift. This one relates to how the software is delivered to the customer. The marketing czars have given it many different names: On Demand Software, Software as a Service (SaaS), and the latest one from Microsoft - Software plus Services.

Different names but similar underlying concept.

In this avatar, software is not installed on customer site (on premise) but on servers located outside of customer's "firewall" or off premise to be more exact. There is tons of research weighing the pros and cons of providing software as a service to the customers and we leave that discussion for a later time.

The takeaway is that together SOA and SaaS can make the ERP dream real for the SMB market. On the same token, the dream of selling ERP software to SMB market is much more realizable for a vendor now than it was a decade ago. Perhaps in the next decade or so ERP and SMB will be synonymous as has been the case with larger organizations.


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