A recent survey shows limited awareness, constrained usage.
By Ron Exler
Small and midsize business (SMB) executives have significant challenges in today's economy, including finding and keeping customers, controlling costs, and positioning for growth. Technology must support those objectives if they want SMB executives to pay attention.
According to the research firm Saugatuck Technology, which focuses on emerging enterprise technologies, Software as a Service (SaaS) refers to "software provided and used in a utility computing context, where the services provider delivers the functionality of the application or utility infrastructure software over a network, through a services interface. Typically this functionality is sold via a subscription model, or on a utility-style, "pay as you go" (PAYG), or per unit, basis." Saugatuck believes SaaS is becoming ubiquitous--and is affecting nearly all solution sectors, industries, and business and IT functions. According to IDC, SaaS software revenues doubled between 2006 and 2008, with it taking as much as 5 percent of the total software market. Gartner says that by 2012 more than two-thirds of independent software vendors will offer their applications as SaaS solutions.