Software as a stream: how subscription models became the norm

A quiet revolution has transformed how software is bought and even installed, but is the service model the answer to our prayers or will we be pining for the days of paying upfront?

Roland Pust, chief executive and creative director of MM Creative, says the subscription model allows him more flexibility

The days of software coming in thick boxes weighed down with CDs and manuals as a means of demonstrating value or professionalism are long gone, but it was not so long ago that off-the-shelf software was at least paid for in full before being downloaded from a digital shelf.

Today, software as a service (SaaS), where software is paid for via a recurring subscription, has become the norm – almost. The benefits for developers are ...