ANALYSIS – While it may not fall into the original, and somewhat ill fated definition of software as a service (SaaS), these two articles highlight the reasons why the new generation of web-based productivity and business applications may actually succeed. Harken back a few years when software vendors were sprinting towards delivery of their applications as a service and the coffins for MS Office and other applications were being built. Guess they did not realize it is a marathon, not a sprint as only a handful actually survived.
Fast forward to the present and one can find a web-based alternative for nearly any commonly used application. Maybe the success and increased usage is related to not calling it SaaS and corporate mentality has changed to where a website is ok? Maybe IT gave up fighting it? Or maybe the vendors figured out how to sneak it by the firewall and go after the user, ala Google Desktop, and Google Apps. Whatever reason, this time the trend will stick- the timing is right, the mentality is changing and now all the needs to happen is to make sure the use is secure - particularly in corporate environments.
Check out some alternative online applications below: