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SaaS replacing legacy apps, as well as extending them

SaaS adoption is on the rise worldwide, with most companies planning to boost their investment, reports Gartner.

Companies are not only buying into SaaS (software as a service) more than ever, they are also ripping out legacy on-premises applications and replacing them with SaaS, according to analyst firm Gartner.

"In the past 12 months, Gartner has seen a decline in the proportion of SaaS deployed to augment existing applications," according to Gartner's report, which explores global SaaS adoption patterns. It found regional patterns, with SaaS replacing existing systems in mature markets, while often being the first business solution implemented in emerging markets.

Much of SaaS adoption is fairly recent, Gartner found, with 71 percent of responding organisations overall reporting that they have been using it for less than three years. Brazil showed the highest level of new users; 27 percent said they had adopted SaaS less than a year ago, Gartner said.

A sizable majority of respondents in all regions said they planned to increase their investments in SaaS. Only small percentages planned to cut spending on SaaS, according to the report.

"Seeing such high intent to increase spending isn't a huge surprise as the adoption of the on-demand deployment model has grown for more than a decade, but its popularity has increased significantly within the past five years," the report states. "Initial concerns about security, response time and service availability have diminished for many organisations as SaaS business and computing models have matured and adoption has become more widespread."

Users are also increasingly weighing whether a SaaS vendor also offers PaaS (platform as a service) capabilities for extending the software and building new applications, according to Gartner. Fifty-six percent called PaaS "very important," another 22 percent termed it a "requirement," and 18 percent said it was "somewhat important," the report states.

Gartner surveyed 592 respondents during June and July in the U.S., Asia-Pacific, Europe and Brazil, covering 10 countries in all.

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