Application service providers (ASPs) have promised that this year users will get a greater say in how the technology is used and developed, writes Antony Savvas.
Speaking at the ASP European Summit in London last week, Traver Gruen Kennedy, chairman of the ASP Industry Consortium, said, "Last year we concentrated on getting the technology off the ground, this year we will concentrate on building up closer ties with the user communities to help overcome obstacles to the wide take-up of application service provision."
The consortium was founded by 25 supplier companies last year, and has since grown to 400. Members are concerned that the hype surrounding the concept of ASP - the renting of software applications instead of buying them - is still not creating many deals.
Kennedy claimed that the majority of businesses in the UK planned to adopt some form of ASP, but suppliers at the conference admitted actual business generated around ASP is still small.
While confident that ASP will eventually turn into a multi-billion pound business, Kennedy said obstacles like user fears over security, and concerns over being able to enforce contracts against suppliers if things go wrong, would have to be overcome.
"ASP is a technology which can be used worldwide, but which is bound by national legislation, so dispute resolution standards have to be drawn up for instance," said Kennedy.