There are typically three common methods to license and deploy (also known as distribute or install) computer software to customers, especially in the business software space.
These three methods are;
SaaS: a solution hosted and maintained by a third-party.
On Premise: this is software hosted in-house, that is, within a businesses local computer network, either on each device or on the main file server.
Off Premise: this is software that is hosted by a third-party.
Let’s go through and explain each of these methods, and their main pros and cons.
SaaS (Software as a Service)
Most modern software is licensed as SaaS (Software as a Service), which means that it is centrally hosted in the cloud, and delivered to customers over the internet.
This software deployment method means that software is easily implemented and updated, and can be accessed by businesses and their employees from almost any internet-connected device.
This is the traditional method of software distribution, either purchased and downloaded over the internet, delivered by postal mail, or purchased in a physical software store.
The least likely to occur in most organisational situations. This is where a business or organisation purchases the software and then installs it on a central third party environment, which their employees then have access to.
Each of these software distribution methods have valid reasons, and pros and cons. I trust this article helps further explain their unique differences.