Indeed, as SMBs first moved into SaaS, they looked at SaaS-delivered applications as something new and interesting, and managed it as a silo. With increased use of SaaS, and as the business matures, there's a need to link SaaS-based apps with the rest of the enterprise. That type of integration is hard, but many SMBs now see the need. So, how do you integrate your SaaS applications with your other enterprise applications?...
In my past life I was CEO of Bridgewerx, a company providing integration both as an appliance and as SaaS. Bridgewerx used a pretty sophisticated model for its time, and it's a good approach since both models sell the notion of convenience and economy. Therein lies the synergy... I suspect we'll see more of the appliance model for SaaS or SaaS-like business applications in the years to come.
In a recent development, smaller SaaS providers are lining up behind larger telecom players to better penetrate markets that are underserved. Jamcracker is an aggregator of SaaS providers that offers provisioning, billing and all of the essentials that a lot of ISVs need in order to convert their products to SaaS. Jamcracker is taking this platform to existing network players that have better connections with smaller businesses - the likely users of SaaS.
At Google's Developer Day event on May 31st, the company announced Google Gears, an open-source technology for creating off-line Web applications. You may think of "offline Web" as an oxymoron, but this type of technology is sorely needed to get around a key limitation of SaaS - the ability to use your SaaS applications when you're disconnected from the Internet.
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