What is cloud software?
The advantages of cloud software services.
Using SaaS tools in engineering and design.
Cloud software enables applications with unlimited storage and ease of use
In the 1970s, the introduction of the videocassette recorder (VCR) ignited the consumer entertainment market by bringing theater-style entertainment into living rooms. Eventually, the tapes were replaced by DVDs and later Blu-ray disks. Many homes still have libraries of these different media formats, but they are slowly being phased out in favor of online streaming services for some very basic reasons. A subscription streaming service is a lot easier to use, it is often less expensive, and it will save a lot of physical space for media storage in a den or living room. Additionally, streaming entertainment goes wherever you go, so you don’t have to be at home to enjoy its services.
In the same way that streaming entertainment services provide more benefits than older forms of media, cloud computing offers similar advantages over more traditional computer systems and networks. Cloud software is much easier for users to configure and operate, the cost is far less, and software and data are stored within the cloud instead of on the users’ servers, freeing up storage space. With software residing in the cloud, it is a deviceless system that enables users to access software from anywhere. In fact, streaming entertainment services are what they are today because they are facilitated by software-as-a-service (SaaS) platforms in the cloud. This article will look at the benefits of cloud software and how SaaS can extend beyond consumer services and into the realm of corporate operations.
What Is Cloud Software?
The “Cloud” is a computing system consisting of servers, storage, networks, applications, and software development tools available on the internet. For years, corporations and individuals were responsible for the purchase, configuration, and maintenance of their own hardware and software. Now, with the services provided by cloud computing and cloud software, users can bypass the logistics of hardware and software support and get straight to the task at hand. Let’s take a look at some of the tasks that are available through an ordinary web browser:
- Entertainment: Streaming services can be accessed through a browser to display their programming on most portable devices.
- Banking: Most standard bank accounts can now be accessed through a web browser, allowing customers to access, query, and transfer funds.
- Shopping: In addition to online shopping services, many grocery and specialty stores have incorporated browser-based shopping, which played an essential role during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Cloud software provides a stable, easy-to-use, and accessible platform for users to connect to the applications and data they need for immediate solutions. Next, we’ll look at the advantages of cloud software in greater detail.
Cloud software removes the need for complex hardware and software management
The Advantages of Cloud Software Services
Cloud software used by online services is commonly referred to as “SaaS,” or software-as-a-service tools and applications. These services provide several benefits to their users, including ease of use and on-demand functionality.
Ease of Use
Browser-based applications like banking tools take the responsibility of loading and maintaining software away from the user. Consider your online health insurance as an example:
- Health insurance accounts are often accessed through a web browser. Although an application may be available for some of these services, the web browser absolves the user from having to install and maintain it.
- The web browser grants the user access to their medical insurance information. With cloud software powering the SaaS application, all users need is their login and password information to access their accounts from anywhere.
- The software infrastructure for a user’s medical and financial records is spectacular. Additionally, medical history, FAQs, and other related medical and financial data further complicate the system. Thankfully, all of this is controlled by the insurance provider through cloud software.
Browser-based tools can also be requested and used immediately. Take engineering tools, for example. To calculate the impedance of specific signals on a circuit board, engineers used to rely on manual calculations or charts. With the release of impedance calculator applications, this operation was greatly improved:
Running the application required downloading the application and installing it. Any updates would also have to be downloaded and installed before the task could proceed.
Cloud software tools gave users immediate access to the calculators that were available online. Updates and corrections were managed within the cloud, making the calculators ready to be used by engineers instantaneously and without any startup issues.
Many of these cloud calculators are now featured on PCB manufacturing websites through a link and are available to users without a cost.
With simple tools like impedance calculators demonstrating the capabilities of cloud software, the engineering community is now ready for the next step into more advanced EDA SaaS-based tools. Let’s take a look at what these tool suites might include.
Cloud software can reduce overhead and get the tools designers need into their hands sooner
Advancing the Capabilities of SaaS Into Engineering and Design
Corporations rely on various software systems and tools for their tasks and companies that design products will use them even more. Electronic OEMs, for instance, may use several design tools for software, electrical, and mechanical development. These systems contain multiple modules for different tasks, including schematic capture, circuit simulation, PCB layout, library management, system analysis, and much more. The sheer number of different software systems in use at any given OEM could be staggering, and each tool needs to be installed, configured, and regularly maintained to play its part properly. This business model is expensive and labor-intensive to ensure that design engineers have the tools they need at the right time.
Imagine the benefits that cloud software could bring to an engineering group with SaaS-based design tools. The overhead required to purchase and maintain software tools and the hardware to run them on could be replaced with ordinary machines equipped with a standard web browser. The design tools would already be configured and ready for use, and users would be equipped with a subscription service tailored for their specific design group. The future that design engineers have been wanting may be closer than we think. Imagine sitting down at your tablet and being able to use the best design software on the market, from schematic capture to PCB layout and everything in between. This will finally free up design engineers to focus on developing products instead of wrestling with their hardware and software systems.
If you’re looking to learn more about how Cadence has the solution for you, talk to our team of experts.