Software as a service (SaaS) is a software distribution model in which a third-party provider hosts applications and makes them available to customers over the Internet.

It is a way of delivering convenient software applications over the Internet as a service. Enterprises can simply access those applications via the Internet without installing and maintaining software and related heavy infrastructure on their own premises. They can free themselves from complex software and hardware management.

SaaS applications run on the servers of SaaS service providers. The provider manages each part application management including security, availability, upgrades and performance. It has got a kind of multitenant architecture, in which all users and applications share a centrally maintained; single and common infrastructure as well as code base.

Pros & Cons

Advantages

Cost Advantage: From licensing of software to maintenance and upgrades of applications are being taken care of by vendors. Company needs to pay just for the usage of application

Less Time to Deployment: SaaS software solutions can be implemented in a matter of weeks rather than months

Anywhere Access: You just need a browser and internet access to connect. This makes mobile access, remote working and the sharing of information easier than ever.

Less internal responsibility: Vendor is responsible for maintaining the software, upgrading the system and maintaining customization through upgrades.

Limitations

Lake of flexibility: SaaS are kind of common applications for all. They have got standard formates with very less customization possibilities. For your specific process or report needs, you have to adjust with system

Security of Data and information: As your application is hosted and handled by vendor, security of data and information can be the biggest concern. However, vendors are trying to work on this issues, but guaranteed security is still far way to go

There are some other minor limitation like, some countries and industries have regulation and compliances relating to where data is stored.

Limited Control: As SaaS infrastructure is entirely owned, managed and monitored by the service provider, it gives minimal control over to the customer.

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