Application Virtualization solutions are a new generation of application infrastructure that enable a cloud or SaaS-like experience for end users without the hassle of deploying and managing their own IT systems.
Virtual Application Services (VAS) is the application virtualization technology that enables IT service providers to offer their users applications through self-service portals. Users have the option of deploying an application through a virtual infrastructure and a self-service portal or signing up to a service provider (i.e., an ASP) who can deploy the application onto their own infrastructure with a self-service portal. The virtual infrastructure can be hosted anywhere in the world, so the location of a user does not matter. The most important differentiator of VAS is its self-service model that gives customers the freedom to deploy and manage their own applications without the help of IT. This service model enables new business models such as "pay as you go" applications that are a cost effective option for users.
The following features are offered by VAS platforms:
Service Provisioning - The ability to provide software and service to individual users or users of groups, to organizations, or to an enterprise on demand.
Service Delivery - The ability to quickly provide and change applications, or a service that operates within a predefined set of functionality.
Service Management - The ability to manage the lifecycle of applications at all times and the ability to quickly deploy, delete, update and migrate applications.
The VAS platforms follow the following business models:
"Pay as you go" - A new business model for digital applications.
""Software as a service" - Applications run in a data center, delivered as a service that is available from any Internet-connected device.
""Virtual desktop environment" - Virtual desktop environments run desktop software in a virtual computing environment, as an alternative to physical desktops.
"Application services" - Offer services in the form of applications that are delivered and consumed.
"Software appliance" - An enterprise can package up its application software and its database into a single unit, to simplify the deployment and management of software.
"Software-as-a-service" - Applications can be provisioned to individual users.
"Hosted services" - Offer hosted services in the form of hosted software as a service.
"Application management" - Applications can be centrally managed using a service-oriented architecture.
"Service management" - Management of applications, based on a service-oriented architecture, using virtual servers and automated deployment.