Software as a Service (SaaS) is a software distribution model in which applications are hosted by a vendor or service provider and made available to customers over a network, typically the Internet.
SaaS is becoming an increasingly prevalent delivery model as underlying technologies that support Web services and service-oriented architecture (SOA) mature and new developmental approaches, such as Ajax, become popular. Meanwhile, broadband service has become increasingly available to support user access from more areas around the world.
Benefits of the SaaS model include:
The traditional model of software distribution, in which software is purchased for and installed on personal computers, is sometimes referred to as software as a product.