We’ve covered Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS). Now let’s discuss SaaS, also known as Software-as-a-Service.

PaaS and IaaS are obvious hosting solutions. SaaS, not so obvious, but it really is another kind of cloud hosting. It may just as easily be called cloud computing and it’s the most common form of cloud services at present (though that is likely to change).

Software-as-a-Service allows businesses to lease specific applications as software packages. The advantage is that you don’t have to spend thousands of dollars on bundled software applications such as what you’d find in traditional software where you are only interested in a few functions the software provides. With SaaS you can lease only the applications that you are interested in for a smaller fee.

This can often by more efficient and less expensive than traditional computing. For instance, if you are interested in an application that allows you to bill your customers but not necessarily handle your accounting and banking functions then you find applications in the SaaS category that allow you to do that.

When you’re ready to delve into your cloud hosting needs, consider whether you need SaaS, PaaS or IaaS and choose the hosting you need based on your own in-house goals.