The End of SaaS, and For That Matter, Everything Else as We Know It? I Think Not.

So all I’ve been reading about recently is what appears to be the end of the world as I know it….Wall Street and the economy is collapsing on the credit crunch, technology CEO’s are predicting the end of SaaS, and cloud computing is toast. Truly positive times, positive thinking.

Lawson’s CEO spoke along these lines so confidently, and foolhardy, a few weeks ago in the context of SaaS. Others have commented as well on cloud computing. But it seems to me that the truth and future, as always, falls somewhere in the middle. SaaS isn’t dying as so much as I believe it’s simply plateaued. Everybody is aware of it and people have heeded its pros and cons.

SaaS will continue to survive because of its appeal to customers and because it’s broken the mold offered by the on-premise model. Hence the SaaS model will continue to succeed because it offers the customer choice. But it’s these same forces that will dictate that the ability to be hybrid, either SaaS or on-premise, will win out in the long-run. Customers should have the choice to deploy their mission-critical apps when they want and in a manner in which their business model dictates how they want it.

Choice is about the ability to customize an application to fit a specific business model. Choice is about having direct control over the data and processes when the time calls for it. For all these reasons and more, SaaS is and never will be the end-all, be-all deployment model.