Welcome!

Release Management Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, David H Deans, Liz McMillan, Jnan Dash

Related Topics: @CloudExpo

@CloudExpo: Article

Is There A Difference Between Cloud Computing and SaaS?

I see SaaS as a subset or segment of the cloud computing market

Jeff Kaplan's Blog

Anyone who has been intimately involved in the evolution of the SaaS or cloud computing worlds has a right to be frustrated by the blurring of the lines between the two concepts.

In my case, I view cloud computing as a broad array of web-based services aimed at allowing users to obtain a wide range of functional capabilities on a 'pay-as-you-go' basis that previously required tremendous hardware/software investments and professional skills to acquire. Cloud computing is the realization of the earlier ideals of utility computing without the technical complexities or complicated deployment worries. With this precept in mind, I see SaaS as a subset or segment of the cloud computing market.

Unfortunately, opportunistic vendors, as well as uneducated journalists and overly simplistic industry analysts, are using the terms interchangeably to serve their own purposes.

While this might infuriate industry purists, the good news is that both ideas are gaining greater mainstream attention and acceptance as a result of escalating coverage in nearly every IT industry trade publication and even more importantly among the major business pubs like the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Fortune and BusinessWeek, along with the NY Times.

I think this positive development far outweighs the potential confusion that could arise about the nuances between the two concepts. However, know it is incumbent on every cloud computing and SaaS vendor to clearly explain their offerings so they don't mislead potential customers.

The surge in demand for cloud computing and SaaS is partially due to macro-market factors, such as the recessionary economic climate and escalating pressures to fundamentally change traditional business practices. But, growing interest in cloud computing and SaaS is also the result of the success and satisfaction of the early adopters who are not only renewing and expanding their use of these web-based services, but recommending them to others, according to THINKstrategies' research and consulting experience.

The 'gold rush' stage we are entering in the cloud computing and SaaS movement will attract plenty of self-serving vendors, overnight experts and tabloid press who will attempt to exploit this exciting market opportunity. They will pose a new threat by offering inferior services, bad advice and distorted stories about the market realities.

For those of us who have been in the vanguard of the movement and worked hard to build a viable new industry, we won't defeat these forces by arguing over terminology. Instead, we will win long-term success by properly educating our customers and successfully satisfying their needs.


[This post appeared originally here and is republished in full with the kind permission of the author.]

More Stories By Jeff Kaplan

Jeff Kaplan is the Managing Director of THINKstrategies, www.thinkstrategies.com, the only strategic consulting firm focused entirely on the business implications of the transition of the technology industry from a product-centric to services-driven solution model, including Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Cloud Computing and Managed Services. THINKstrategies helps IT/business decision-makers with their sourcing strategies; solution providers with their go-to-market strategies; and venture firms with their investment strategies. Kaplan is also the Founder of the Cloud Computing Showplace (www.cloudshowplace.com), the largest, vendor-independent, online directory and best practice resource center regarding SaaS, Platforms-as-a-Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), including Managed Services. Kaplan is also the host of the Cloud Innovators Summit executive forum series, www.cloudsummits.com, including the Connected Cloud Summit, Cloud Channel Summit and Cloud Analytics Summit. Kaplan has over 30 years of experience in the high tech market. He began his career as an industry analyst at IDC, Dataquest and META Group. He then held marketing positions at International Network Services (INS) and InterOPS Management Solutions. He can be reached at [email protected] or 781-431-2690.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


IoT & Smart Cities Stories
DXWordEXPO New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City and will bring together Cloud Computing, FinTech and Blockchain, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, AI, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location.
SYS-CON Events announced today that DatacenterDynamics has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. DatacenterDynamics is a brand of DCD Group, a global B2B media and publishing company that develops products to help senior professionals in the world's most ICT dependent organizations make risk-based infrastructure and capacity decisions.
Cloud-enabled transformation has evolved from cost saving measure to business innovation strategy -- one that combines the cloud with cognitive capabilities to drive market disruption. Learn how you can achieve the insight and agility you need to gain a competitive advantage. Industry-acclaimed CTO and cloud expert, Shankar Kalyana presents. Only the most exceptional IBMers are appointed with the rare distinction of IBM Fellow, the highest technical honor in the company. Shankar has also receive...
Headquartered in Plainsboro, NJ, Synametrics Technologies has provided IT professionals and computer systems developers since 1997. Based on the success of their initial product offerings (WinSQL and DeltaCopy), the company continues to create and hone innovative products that help its customers get more from their computer applications, databases and infrastructure. To date, over one million users around the world have chosen Synametrics solutions to help power their accelerated business or per...
A valuable conference experience generates new contacts, sales leads, potential strategic partners and potential investors; helps gather competitive intelligence and even provides inspiration for new products and services. Conference Guru works with conference organizers to pass great deals to great conferences, helping you discover new conferences and increase your return on investment.
Business professionals no longer wonder if they'll migrate to the cloud; it's now a matter of when. The cloud environment has proved to be a major force in transitioning to an agile business model that enables quick decisions and fast implementation that solidify customer relationships. And when the cloud is combined with the power of cognitive computing, it drives innovation and transformation that achieves astounding competitive advantage.
Digital Transformation: Preparing Cloud & IoT Security for the Age of Artificial Intelligence. As automation and artificial intelligence (AI) power solution development and delivery, many businesses need to build backend cloud capabilities. Well-poised organizations, marketing smart devices with AI and BlockChain capabilities prepare to refine compliance and regulatory capabilities in 2018. Volumes of health, financial, technical and privacy data, along with tightening compliance requirements by...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that ICOHOLDER named "Media Sponsor" of Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO. ICOHOLDER gives detailed information and help the community to invest in the trusty projects. Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO has opened its Call for Papers. The two-day event will present 20 top Blockchain experts. All speaking inquiries which covers the following information can be submitted by email to [email protected] Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPOalso offers sp...
Digital Transformation is much more than a buzzword. The radical shift to digital mechanisms for almost every process is evident across all industries and verticals. This is often especially true in financial services, where the legacy environment is many times unable to keep up with the rapidly shifting demands of the consumer. The constant pressure to provide complete, omnichannel delivery of customer-facing solutions to meet both regulatory and customer demands is putting enormous pressure on...
SYS-CON Events announced today that IoT Global Network has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 6–8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. The IoT Global Network is a platform where you can connect with industry experts and network across the IoT community to build the successful IoT business of the future.