Cloud Computing Promise #2 – Fact or Fiction?

Last week we looked at our first promise – Is Cloud Computing Revolutionary.  Now let’s move on to number 2 –

All Software Applications Delivered Over the Internet are Cloud Computing – Fact or Fiction?

Software applications have been delivered over the Internet for many years. Vendor using this mode of delivery have, until recently, been known as Application Service Providers (ASP). The financial model for this mode of software delivery is typically the same as on-premises, software-annual license fees. Customers of ASP software benefit from a reduced on-premises IT infrastructure and a reduced requirement of administrative support. High-speed Internet connections and low-cost machines that run browsers are all that is required. With all the publicity surrounding cloud computing today, many ASPs are marketing themselves as cloud computing providers. Much of this marketing, though, is only a ploy to increase sales by promising cloud computing while the companies aren’t actually changing their mode of service delivery. This tactic is also referred to as “cloudwashing”.

Like ASP, cloud computing delivers software across the Internet. The term for this is Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). But is SaaS any different from ASP? The answer is most definitely is yes. SaaS has a number of key characteristics that distinguish it from ASP implementations, including:

• SaaS is instantaneously self-provisioned — no setup is required, the software is immediately available

• SaaS is elastically scalable — capacity will automatically adjust in response to varying loads

• The SaaS payment model is proportional to usage, although some SaaS is free to use, e.g. Google Apps

Contrast this to many ASP offerings where the following apply:

• Software runs on a fixed-capacity server that can experience overload during periods of high usage

• Provisioning requires dialogue with sales representatives and a commissioning period before software is available

• Payment model is typically an annual license based on a fixed number of users.

Stay tuned for the next promise we will discuss– Cloud Computing Removes the Need for an Internal IT Department

To see all 10 Cloud Computing promises download our White Paper here!

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