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Definition: SaaS

(1) (Staking-As-A-Service) For crypto staking services, see staking provider.

(2) (Software-As-A-Service) Software that is rented rather than purchased. Instead of buying applications and paying for periodic upgrades, SaaS is subscription based, and upgrades are automatic during the subscription period. When that expires, the software is no longer valid; for example, see Microsoft 365.

The Backbone of Cloud Computing
Although SaaS can be implemented with locally installed applications that expire after a certain time, SaaS caused cloud computing to explode after the turn of the century. SaaS apps run in any desktop or mobile device, no matter the OS. The applications are maintained in the provider's datacenter, and every time users launch their browsers and log on to the service, they get the latest version. In addition, user data is often stored in the cloud.

Many believe that locally installed applications will be history down the road. However, legacy architectures tend to last longer than expected. See SaaS sprawl, cloud computing, XaaS, Web application and ASP.