Friday, August 13, 2010

SaaS and Cloud Computing - An Overview

To understand SaaS in a simple way just think of email offering from Google (as gmail) where multiple clients i.e. email id owner can send / receive mails and can use other features provided by the Google.

Google's mail servers are in Cloud, which can be easily scalable. So this is a perfect example of SaaS and Cloud Computing.

Below figure help you in visualizing SaaS and Cloud Space:So SaaS can be offered as paid service like subscription service. These services can be form of domain specific application such as CRM, and SCM etc. For more detail, visit www.salesforce.com. salesforce application has a complete CRM solution deployed in his cloud environment. Generally vendor or site user will be charged on usage basis and each SaaS provider will has metering capability.

Other kind of service like free or partial free services such as web mail services (i.e. gmail), job site, etc.

Following are the main advantages while adopting SaaS option:
1. Faster time-to-market
2. Cost effective options (in most of case)
3. Lower license cost
4. Nearly zero maintenance and software upgrade cost
5. Good option for start-up companies.
6. Pay on usage basis

Apart from some good advantages, there are some issues and limitation of SaaS application:
1. Non-Scalable design: Generally SaaS application is expected to handle large customer base and scale seamlessly in cloud but non-scalability nature of SaaS application leads deterioration in performance.
2. Hidden cost of SaaS provider
3. Data Security as multiple user/customer will use the same database
4. Availability of SaaS application

Top SaaS Providers:

There are lots of SaaS providers in all the domain areas including CRM, SCM, Health Care, Retail etc. Following are the market leader in SaaS:

1. salesforce: It provide CRM software on-demand. It has various pricing model starting with free subscription, and pay-as-you-go model. Currently they offer two SaaS services:
  • Sales Cloud: It has accounts, contacts, leads, quotes, etc.
  • Service Cloud: It has customer portal, knowledge base, and analytics, etc.

2. Google: It has range of applications as well as web-based offerings. like e-mail service, calendar, document editor, spreadsheet, and some others.

3. Zoho: It has also web-based e-mail service, document editor, presentation tool, invoicing, reporting, applicant tracking, and many more.

Next topic which I will going to cover is SaaS & Cloud Computing - Application Design Consideration.

1 comment:

elcop said...

Thank you for the info. It sounds pretty user friendly. I guess I’ll pick one up for fun. thank u


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