ASP vs SaaS - Fun with acronyms or a sweeping technological shift?


In the dot-com boom era of the late 1990s, we

called Internet-based applications “application

service providers,” or “ASPs” Now we call similar

offerings “software as a service” or “SaaS”. Why

the change in terminology? Are these two things

really different, and if so, how?

Both ASP and SaaS providers share a common goal

of eliminating IT overhead from business. Hardware,

networks, client-server configurations, software licenses

and the human resources needed to maintain them

are outsourced, and the client organization eliminates

those expenses. However, the similarities between ASP

and SaaS end there. So what distinguishes these two


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