The fledgling ASP industry today reacted angrily to the claim made by start-up ASP, 7, that the web isn't reliable enough to deliver applications.
Sean O'Reilly, VP of marketing at ASP NetStore, one of the UK's largest ASPs, said 7's assertion, as reported yesterday on silicon.com, was totally untrue.
Speaking to silicon.com, he said: "This is a claim that I could imagine being made by a new entrant who hasn't any experience of actually delivering ASP services. We have been delivering ASP services for three and a half years, and we have been delivering on our service level agreements."
He added: "This is just a very clever use of public relations, and makes a nice story, but it's not true. I'd call it scare-mongering."
The comments come as a response to claims by newcomer ASP 7, launched on Monday. It said it would not use the public internet to deliver its applications, because it was impossible to guarantee service levels over the web. 7 plans to use virtual private networks instead.
Herb Prooy, CEO and co-founder of leading European ASP Siennax, added to the criticism of the claims.
He said: "The majority of applications are perfectly suited to delivery over the web as it stands today. If you go on the principle that you have to use leased lines and VPNs, then the principle of the ASP is destroyed and you are back to the old-fashioned, twentieth century outsourcing model."
Other industry sources said 7 had missed the point. Software provider for ASPs SevenMountains said performance could be guaranteed over the internet, it was just a question of how much the consumer is willing to pay.
However, Sun Microsystems added to the controversy by agreeing that for some applications the web is not currently up to the job.
Nigel Hopgood, head of ASP strategy for Sun UK, said: "If you're betting your business on a mission-critical application, then you'll want to use a private network."