Today’s (Cloud) Tip…SaaS

Software as a Service (SaaS) is a software delivery business model in which a provider or third party hosts an application and makes it available to customers on a subscription basis. SaaS customers use the software running on the provider’s infrastructure on a pay-as-you-go basis. There are no upfront commitments, so the customer is spared any long-term contracts.

Based on the contractual terms, customers may elect to quit using the software at any time. The underlying infrastructure and the software configuration are invisible to the users, and, hence, customers have to settle for the functionality that is provided out of the box. SaaS uses a highly multi-tenant architecture, and user contexts are separated from one another logically at both runtime and rest.

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/magazine/ee309870.aspx

We have a number of SaaS offerings: Office 365, Team Foundation Service, CRM Online, Outlook.com, SkyDrive, and Intune are just a partial list.