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Whether you call it Software as a Service (SaaS), Managed Service Provider (MSP) or On-Demand Services, your organization uses the service running “in the cloud”. This blog will discuss these services, their benefits, drawbacks and operations. Are we biased? Yes. We believe that some services make sense for most organizations. Email security is one of those. However as Mark Twain said, “All generalizations are false, even this one.” Each Tuesday we will post information and questions about Software as a Service. Occasionally, we will have a "Guest Post" from either a consultant or vendor posting her/his thoughts on Managed Services generally as well as some degree of specificity based on her/his unique perspective. We encourage your insights, comments and feedback. Welcome.


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Hosted Apps: Pros & Cons (Part 2 of 2)

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When we last visited the subject of hosted applications, we focused on the pros of using these services. We took a look at the compelling reasons business have identified for implementing a hosted applications model. To balance this view, we’ll need to identify some concerns or decision factors that come with considering a hosted application solution. Let’s take a look at some of the questions you should consider before adopting the hosted application model.

The Cons (a.k.a. “Decision Factors”)

  • Part of the ease of use of hosted applications comes from a company’s access to data from anywhere around the world, as long as an Internet connection is available — and therein lies a possible con. Without Internet access, getting to the information stored in the hosted application is impossible. In some cases — such as businesses with a mobile workforce — while high speed Internet connectivity is available the cost both in terms of connectivity charges and equipment may, at least in the short term, prove to be prohibitive.
  • Internet security can be a showstopper for some businesses. Critical components to any consideration of a hosted application are the hosted application itself and the nature of the business data.
  • For hosted applications, there may be monthly fees involved in order for businesses to continue to access their historic data. Such monthly fees effectively lock companies into a specific hosted application vendor. When reviewing a hosted application solution, businesses should check to see if the vendor offers the ability to download the data or to allow their customers to maintain access to their data for a reasonable time, free of charge.
  • Lastly, there is the issue of control. As the application is hosted, the hardware and the software are under the control of a third-party. While this might sound a bit territorial, it is a legitimate concern. A common analogy for the control subject is that of a telephone provider supplying and maintaining the communications equipment. This being said, it is important to note that there are considerable incentives for the hosted applications vendors to ensure high availability and reliability.

Next blog topic: The Future of SaaS – Just Another IT Fad?
For the week ending: 01 August 2008


Posted on : Aug 26 2008
Tags: , , ,
Posted under Desktop Apps, Managed Services, SaaS |


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