Pushing predictions from pessimists aside, about 80 software companies have already gone ahead and graduated from ASP Prime, a program from IBM to help ISVs add ASP services.
Opportunities include new dot-com offerings, as well as expanding use of existing enterprise software to smaller companies, said graduates of ASP Prime, during a partners' event in Waltham, Massachusetts.
Aspen Technology, for example, views the ASP model as a way of broadening the customer base for its manufacturing engineering software out into the supply chain, said Oliver Wahnschafft, Aspen director of product management.
"We want to reach a new market of third-tier customers, which are less than $1 billion organizations," Wahnschafft said during an interview in Waltham.
Partners in Aspen's ASP move include Citrix Systems, for help with Web-enabling applications, and IBM Global Services, for managed services.
Auxilor Inc., on the other hand, hopes to bring its help desk software to smaller customers. The Lotus Domino-based software is now being licensed by 130 large enterprises, ranging from Hallmark to Milwaukee Tool, said Auxilor president R. Alan Forbes.
As Forbes sees it, adding an ASP service will help to drive the help desk software beyond the Lotus Notes market, to access by Microsoft Outlook users. Customers will also be able to make use of new features, such as collaborating on help desk tips across companies.
Antheum Corporation, however, has a different kind of play in mind, noted Brett Boston, company president.
Antheum plans to offer its Linux- and Java-based AIP platform on a number of different hardware servers, starting with OS/390 mainframes.
Announcements from two dot-com companies are imminent, according to Antheum president Brett Boston.
One of Antheum's soon-to-be-unveiled customers, Breezevine.com, will offer a multi-domain Web service for homeowners.
Another customer, Trialmasters.com, will run a service aimed at helping lawyers with the jury selection process, Boston added.
Ann Reiten, IBM's ASP global business area leader, said IBM is offering ASP Prime grads the chance to choose hosting services from either IBM Global Services or outside partners who have completed IBM's Hosting Advantage program.