Chapter 2: Software as
a Service (SaaS)
SOFTWARE AS A SERVICE (SaaS) is a solution model in which users use a
web browser to access software that resides, along with the programs and
user data, in the cloud. Companies that use SaaS solutions eliminate the
need for in-house (data-center-based) applications, administrative support
for the applications, and data storage. Because SaaS solutions reside
within the cloud, the solutions can easily scale to meet customer needs.
Further, most companies can pay for the SaaS solutions on demand—
meaning that the companies pay only for the resources they consume,
normally on a per-user basis. SaaS solutions exist for a wide range of
applications and provide customers with a cost-effective way to get started
and an affordable long-term solution.
This chapter examines SaaS solutions in detail. By the time you finish this
chapter, you will be able to do the following:
- Define and describe SaaS.
- List the advantages and disadvantages of SaaS solutions.
- Describe virtualization at both the desktop and the server level.
- Define and describe mashups.
- Discuss the wide range of SaaS solutions and their providers.