Software as a Service or SaaS refers to a cloud service which helps consumers access software applications online. These applications are hosted on the cloud and used for multiple purposes by companies as well as individuals.
WSaaS providers generally price applications on a per-user basis and/or per business basis, sometimes with a relatively small minimum number of users and often with additional fees for extra bandwidth and storage. SaaS revenue streams to the vendor are therefore lower initially than traditional software license fees, but are also recurring, and therefore viewed as more predictable, much like maintenance fees for licensed software.Some SaaS applications are free to the user, with revenue being derived from alternate sources such as advertising, or upgrade fees for enhanced functionality. Examples of free SaaS applications include large players such as Gmail and Google Docs, as well as smaller providers like Wave Accounting and Freshbooks.In addition to characteristics mentioned above, SaaS sometimes provides: