The cloud is the source of everything— it's an industry that began with Software as a Service (SaaS) and has evolved into practically any form of cloud computing offering. Vendors offer everything from A to Z—you can get "Analytics-as-a-Service," "Desktop-as-a-Service," "Platform-as-a-Service" and even "Quantum Computing-as-a-Service." The list is boundless and it isn't about to stop.
The Software as a Service industry, which started all of us reaching for the cloud, has hit $116 billion and is expected to reach $130 billion in 2020. Looks like everyone's head is in the clouds.
A rapidly growing industry
So what is SaaS? The delivery and licensing model allows software to be accessed on the web via a subscription rather than having it installed on a computer. Instead of investing in the hardware, companies can rely on providers to host and manage the infrastructure to support the software. And it makes sense for a company’s velocity as well—technology trends are rapidly changing, and SaaS helps provide quick upgrades and management. It saves money and is easier and faster to use.
SaaS Mag writes that as the rapidly growing as-a-service industry skyrockets to $130 billion, it’s important to keep an eye on trends. These include the incorporation of artificial intelligence, the shift to transaction-based payment models and even the incorporation of blockchain.
The many variations of as-a-service
Beyond just software, as-a-service has truly blossomed across the technology spectrum. Let’s take a look at just some of the variations the cloud can provide:
- Platform-as-a-Service provides a platform for engineers to create software via the web. This allows developers to build software without worrying about things like updates or infrastructure.
- Desktop-as-a-Service: VentureBeat poses this question—why can’t you access a desktop or application as easy as you would get a video or article online? DaaS helps employees work wherever they need to be, especially for large companies that have contractors around the world. With Desktop-as-a-Service, employees can use their own devices and log in via an authentication app.
- Fintech-as-a-Service: As more companies are looking to embed financial services as a part of their technology, Fintech-as-a-Service could be the most logical next step. London-based startup Rapyd’s API lets customers access things like payments, checkout, foreign exchange, and more. The fintech startup shows us just how hot FaaS could be, with a valuation at $1.2 billion.
- Quantum-Computing-as-a-Service: Believe it or not, Quantum-Computing-as-a-Service is on its way as well. In December, Amazon announced and launched a preview for Amazon Braket, a managed AWS service where users can run simulations on a set of existing quantum computers. The company is also creating the “AWS Center for Quantum Computing”, a lab in California where they can research the calculations.
Learn more about the benefits and the challenges of the SaaS model by clicking here.