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SaaS vs Open Source – A Detailed Comparison

person using MacBook proThere are two major types of software solutions favored by businesses across the world. SaaS and open source solutions both have numerous potential benefits for businesses. But what exactly are they? And when do you decide when to use which? This is exactly what this blog will attempt to discuss in simplified terms. If you have a good internet connection like Spectrum internet you would better be able to analyze the differences and makes a final decision. There are specific circumstances that indicate whether to use SaaS like TeamViewer and Shopify or open-source software like Magento and WooCommerce. By the end of this blog, you should have a much clearer idea about both types of software.

SaaS vs Open Source

So, you are looking for information on the differences between SaaS and open-source software solutions. Both have their own strengths and weaknesses when it comes to applications in the business world. The software solution you choose depends heavily on the specifics of your business. These include your goal, budget, time constraints, etc. But more on that later. This blog focuses on the following key areas:

  1. What is Open Source Software?
  2. When to Choose Open Source Software Solutions?
  3. The Pros and Cons of Open Source Software
  4. What is SaaS?
  5. When to Choose SaaS Software Solutions?
  6. The Pros and Cons of SaaS
  7. Conclusion

Without further ado, let’s get down to business right away.

What is Open Source Software?

Open-source software is a type of software where the source code is available to the public or a community. Publically available source code means there are very few limits to customizing the open-source software to meet your business goals. Open-source software is generally a free-of-cost solution, with the only expenditure being on development.

There are tons of well-recognized open-source software solutions available on the internet. Linux is one of the most popular examples, along with Joomla and MyBB. There are two subcategories of open-source software. One type of open source software is for development tools. The second type is for business tools.

Development tools open-source software usually has the backing of a community or a non-profit organization. MySQL, Java, and C++ are very good examples. Business tools open-source software include solutions for CRM, HRM, Content Management, etc.

When to Choose Open Source Software Solutions?

Businesses usually use open source software solutions when they have a budget for a development team. Open-source software comes in handy when you need to develop a business software solution in house. Since open-source software is very customizable, businesses can use it to generate tailored solutions.

The Pros and Cons of Open Source Software

Like just about everything in life, open-source software solutions have their advantages and disadvantages. However, knowing the strengths and limitations of open-source software can be extremely useful in deciding. Below follow the pros and cons of using open-source software as a business solution.


The biggest and most significant advantage of using open-source software is customizability. You have complete control over the software solution. When you need to generate a custom solution tailored specifically to your business, open-source software is the best option. You can control virtually every aspect of the software, accomplishing many things you can’t do with a SaaS solution.


  • Difficult to use: These open-source software platforms are usually designed with developers in mind.
  • Maintenance costs: Depending on how complex the software solution is, there are associated costs with maintaining it. You need to account for hosting, updates, and security as well as a team to do all of these things. You may need to hire a development team or outsource to a development firm.
  • Costly: There are associated costs that come with developing software in-house till it goes live. Once it goes live, there are additional costs to consider. Maintenance costs, hosting costs, app development costs, etc. all add up.

What is SaaS?

SaaS stands for Software as a Service. SaaS software is generally a cloud-based solution. The software is usually maintained, managed, and backed for profit by an organization. With most SaaS solutions, you subscribe to the service for a monthly or annual fee. SaaS usually has a higher code quality and is easier to deploy than open-source software.

When to Choose SaaS Software Solutions?

SaaS is very useful when it comes to utility solutions for businesses. It also comes in handy when you need a software solution for an important, but not critical, business function. SaaS is a good alternative when you don’t have the budget to develop a software solution in-house. Make sure your internet is working fine at all times to get such things onboard. If not, you can dial Spectrum phone number for further assistance. It also does away with many other costs you would otherwise bear with open-source software.

The Pros and Cons of SaaS

SaaS may sound like a dream come true, but just like open-source software, it has its ups and downs. Below follow the most significant advantages and disadvantages of using SaaS solutions.


  • Non-Technical: On a SaaS platform, the company that owns it does most of the technical grunt work. This means you don’t need to do many of the things you would with an open-source platform. There is no need for costs involving updates, security, hosting, and maintenance.
  • Fast Deployment: With a subscription to SaaS software, you go live within minutes. SaaS is easy to deploy across your entire organization with very little disruption.
  • Ease of Use: SaaS, like any good service, makes it easier for subscribers to use them.


  • Less Control: Unlike open source solutions, SaaS doesn’t offer complete access to the source code. This means you can only do what the tool limits you to. There is not much room for customizability.
  • Hidden Costs: Your SaaS may have several tiers, with the lowest one offering basic services. To get access to the full range of features, you may need to subscribe to a better tier.


Both types of software solutions have their own advantages and disadvantages. But which one you choose depends a lot on the specifics of your business. If you have the time, budget, and necessary resources, opt for open-source software solutions. You have a business that would rather focus on key revenue generation than in-house non-revenue activities. You may not have the budget or inclination to invest resources into this exercise.

In such cases, SaaS like a TeamViewer license is an easy and quick fix to your business needs. When deciding which type of software to use, always think objectively. Don’t jump into a decision based on your own biases. Carefully evaluate your business needs, use what this blog has taught you, and make an informed decision. Leave us comments below if you found this blog helpful.