Many clients of mine asked me that what exactly hosting an application means. It has an easy concept, hosting an application or we can say application hosting is a web based solution that enables clients to run software applications via cloud on a recurring basis and is generally provided by an ASP I.e, Application Service Provider.
The requirement for ASPs has evolved from the increasing costs of specialized software that have far surpassed the price range of small to medium sized businesses. As well, the growing complexities of software have led to maximum costs in distributing the software to end-users. With the help of ASPs, the complexities and costs of such software can be cut down. In addition, the problems of upgrading have been eliminated from the end-firm by placing the onus on the ASP to maintain up-to-date services, 24 x 7 technical support, physical and electronic security and in-built support for business continuity and flexible working.
A hosted cloud system can be leased or rented on a monthly or annual basis, thus discarding the need to buy expensive equipments, the main reason is that most of the equipments are hosted by the service provider and all communication is routed through that provider to and from your company’s site or sites. Application hosted environment setup has an advantage in terms of cost of operation, and it is also easier to install, increases the flexibility and allows communicating from any part of the world with just an ease.
Hosted cloud solution is very inexpensive to operate, and as usage and number of user increases, the cost advantage of hosted application systems simply disappears
Now next question is what is Hosting means?
Hosting is a software application distribution system where clients application such as CRM, Location Intelligence or others, are maintained and managed by a qualified service provider and made available to clients, as a service over the WWW. Exactly, this means that an application exist on the provider’s servers instead of clients personnel in-house servers. The application software can be instantly accessed and shared by client sales/marketing, through a web browser.
Advantages of good hosting service solutions:
- No loss of data security/control
Easy and quicker implementation and quicker ROI
No steep learning curves, and also provides ease of use to clients
Reduced Sales, Marketing and IT support every time
Cheaper software and hardware costs
24×7 maintenance, support, and security
Automatic and frequent upgrades of the application software
Ability to implement improvements on an ongoing
The biggest advantage is that clients are sharing and accessing important information with all their sales and marketing teams, instead of it all residing on their separate desktops. In addition, clients should get: Sales & Marketing on the same page, sharing the similar information all the time Enhanced company image and customer loyalty Reduced costs and increased revenue and ROI.
Some inherent disadvantages areas follows:
The client must generally accept the application as provided since ASPs can only afford a customized solution for the largest clients
The client may rely on the provider to provide a critical business function, thus limiting their control of that function and instead relying on the provider
Changes in the ASP market may result in changes in the type or level of service available to clients
Integration with the client’s non-ASP systems may be problematic
Evaluating an Application Service Provider security when moving to an ASP infrastructure can come at a high cost, as such a firm must assess the level of risk associated with the ASP itself. Failure to properly account for such risk can lead to:
- Loss of control of corporate data
- Loss of control of corporate image
- Insufficient ASP security to counter risks
- Exposure of corporate data to other ASP customers
- Compromise of corporate data