What is SaaS? Layman’s Guide to Software-as-a-Service

In the past few decades, the world has seen massive developments in technology. We saw the rise of single-function machines, and now we have multi-functional portable devices everywhere. These devices can perform many processes and tasks quickly. We have also seen Machine Language and Artificial Intelligence take over businesses. These revolutionary technologies have helped businesses in making profitable decisions for the future. Software now uses networks and gives users access to servers and data from thousands of miles away. All thanks to the geniuses that we know as software developers.

The U.S. News and World Report have ranked Software Development or Software Engineering amongst the top three careers in the country every year for a decade. They have predicted that this career will stay up on the top well into the future. As it is very much in demand, the salaries are high. And amongst many other benefits and perks, there is the possibility of remote work. So if you have a knack for analytics and coding, we would recommend a career in software development.

Computer sciences have become a vast field of academia. With small duration courses and certifications, many universities offer online Master’s in Computer Science program as well as on-campus programs. There is a variety of opportunities at a Bachelor’s level as well. The demand for professionals in this field is projected to stay high, so a career in it will be a wise choice right now.

Software developers now have the power to control the entire world. After the outbreak of the Covid-19, the world was forced to transition from the physical world to the virtual world. From the business world to the education sector, all was made remote. These past two years saw a boom in the B2B and B2C seller interactions remotely. But many companies that were operating digital self-services benefitted a lot during this time. A report by McKinsey stated that nearly 80% of the companies now prefer remote interactions or digital self-service. This digital self-service is known as Software as a Service (SaaS). In this article, we’ll explain SaaS and, with it, hopefully intrigue students into pursuing a career in software development.

What is SaaS?

SaaS, or Software as a service, is a cloud-based service that does not require purchasing and installation on individual devices. Instead, this application uses a subscription and can be accessed via any internet-enabled device such as a smartphone or laptop. The software and all relevant data are stored on the cloud in different data centers, which makes it accessible via the internet from any web browser. There are tremendous benefits for both developers and users.

Well-known examples of SaaS

To make the concept of SaaS more understandable, here are some of the famous software that are used worldwide.

  • Amazon Web Services
  • Dropbox
  • Gmail
  • Google Drive
  • Netflix
  • Adobe Creative Cloud
  • Spotify
  • Zoom

All these well-known names provide services to consumers and customers by subscriptions (charge based on usage, value-based pricing, user-based pricing, timely subscriptions). Their entire data is stored on the cloud and can be accessed from any device with an internet connection.

Covid-19 and SaaS

As discussed above, the only good that came out of covid-19 was flourishing the SaaS industry. 64% of the companies intend to retain their remote setup, whereas 76% of companies plan on long-term IT changes. Companies like Shopify (208%) and Zoom (420%) saw a massive increase in their values. The total market value of the ten largest SaaS companies exceeded $1trillion by the end of the year 2020. Seeing this growth, over 90% of the companies were using one or more SaaS solutions by the end of 2021. (Statistics)

Advantages of SaaS

The above-mentioned statistics show that shifting to SaaS has proven to be very beneficial in these times. But many companies intend to use this business model long into the future. This is because this service has multiple advantages. Some of these are listed below.

  • Market Reach – the vendor can supply its software to a vast majority. This means they can reduce the pricing and make it more accessible.
  • Data Analytics – since everything is centralized, collecting data is a piece of cake. Using the appropriate Business Intelligence tools, businesses that use SaaS can benefit from this data and make better, profitable decisions for the future.
  • Accessibility – these software can be accessed from any operating system or any device. You just have to log in from your account, and you’d be able to view it all anywhere. They can be used on desktops or computers as well as tablets and mobile phones.
  • Saving and Storage – in SaaS, data is routinely saved on the cloud. You can switch from one device to the other without worrying about your data.
  • Updates – it was very tedious to update software in the old days because it required purchasing all over again. With SaaS, the vendor just has to update the software centrally. This means that the users’ work will not be disrupted.
  • Scalability – since everything is on the cloud, increasing or adding users can happen by just pressing a button. Vendors do not have to purchase expensive hardware to increase capacity.
  • Lower Cost – maintenance and expansion cost is very lower. Such models are very beneficial for new businesses that have limited budgets. Similarly, clients will not bring in their hardware for repairs now and then.


The SaaS business model is gaining popularity because of the manifold benefits it offers for vendors as well as their users. In such times, many companies have and are intending to change their business strategies to adopt this model. This means that there will be a surge in the demand for software developers and programmers who have the appropriate knowledge. The future is of SaaS, and opting for software engineering will be a wise choice!