When paradigms collide: SaaS meets SOA

A running joke is that some IT vendors do such a poor job of explaining their products that if they were to try to sell sushi, it will be marketed as "cold, wet, dead fish." Are software as a service (SaaS) and on-demand computing providers similarly underselling what they do?

A running joke is that some IT vendors do such a poor job of explaining their products that if they were to try to sell sushi, it will be marketed as "cold, wet, dead fish."

Are software as a service (SaaS) and on-demand computing providers similarly underselling what they do? Is one of the most transformative and productive IT strategies to hit the market in years being sold as cold, wet, dead fish? Loosely Coupled's Phil Wainewright thinks so, as he explains in a recent post.

Wainewright observes that the very phrases "software as a service" and "on-demand" suggest that the model is all about simply delivering software in a different way than before. Software vendors "are so used to customers payingthem simply for shipping out software that they think'software-as-a-service' means signing a service contract for the samething spread over three years.... Theconventional ISV's view of 'software-as-a-service' cannot help but betainted by all the defects and limitations of their currentsoftware-as-a-product model."

"The transformation is far more fundamental thanthat," he says. Wainewright urges adoption of the phrase "software-powered services" to better describes the capability of "creating functional services and applications for customers," and not just reflecting a change in the delivery mechanism. Just as importantly, he adds, software-powered services also describes SOAs. "That's not just a coincidence," he says. "These two forms of software-poweredservices are converging, and in my opinion will fuse sometime in thecoming decade."






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