Q1) What is an Application Service Provider? What factors drive their emergence?
An Application Service Provider (ASP) delivers software functionality to its customers over the Internet. The software executes from a remote location and data is stored remotely (cloud/grid computing). Basically, it is a business that provides the computer based services over a network. It is also sometimes called as On-demand Software or software as a service (SaaS). The most limited sense of this business is that of providing access to a particular application program using standard protocols such as HTTP.
The factors that drive the ASPs emergence are
Increasing cost of specialized software that have far exceeded the price range of small-medium businesses. 2)
Usual urgency of a company to set up a IT capability internally – which is similar to the infrastructure already used/developed by many companies 3)
Less investment for the base functionalities (which are provided by ASP) of an IT firm 4)
Companies’ urge to support their services 24*7 unlike the traditional business operations 5)
Optimizing the number of IT staff inside the organization so that some of the required functionalities could be cosourced or outsourced to an ASP 6)
Companies’ move towards mobile workforce
Q2) How does Jamcracker fit in the ASP space? Explain the Jamcracker business model.
Jamcracker’s business model was based on the ASP concept. But it wasn’t exactly the ASP. Rather, Jamcracker cooperated with ASP partners to combine application services through its enterprise IT management platform – “Jamcracker Enterprise”- into comprehensive offerings, including technical support and billing. For example, an ASP that provided an email application and another that provided desktop productivity application could, via Jamcracker technology, appear to the customer as an integrated service package. Customers could pick and choose from an “a la carte” menu of the applications in the virtual...
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