Application service provider – Definition & Meaning

In today’s digital age, businesses require advanced technological solutions to stay ahead of the competition. One such solution is the application service provider (ASP). ASPs offer a range of services to businesses, including software applications, data storage, and network management. In this article, we will explore the meaning and definition of an application service provider.


An application service provider (ASP) is a company that provides software applications and related services to customers over the internet. These services are delivered from the ASP’s servers, which are located in data centers. The ASP model allows businesses to access software applications and services without having to invest in expensive infrastructure or hardware.


The concept of an application service provider emerged in the late 1990s when the internet was gaining popularity. ASPs were initially popular among small and medium-sized businesses that could not afford to invest in expensive software and hardware. Over time, the ASP model has evolved, and today, it is used by businesses of all sizes.

Meaning in different dictionaries

According to Merriam-Webster, an application service provider is “a company that provides access to and use of application programs via the internet.” The Oxford English Dictionary defines an ASP as “a company that provides software applications and related services to customers over the internet.”


The ASP model is often associated with cloud computing, as both involve delivering services over the internet. ASPs may also be associated with software as a service (SaaS), which is a software delivery model that allows users to access software applications over the internet.


Some synonyms for application service provider include software as a service provider, cloud service provider, and hosted service provider.


There are no direct antonyms for application service provider. However, businesses that choose not to use ASPs may opt to invest in on-premises software and hardware.

The same root words

The term application service provider is composed of the words “application” and “service provider.” Application refers to a software program, while service provider refers to a company that provides a service.

Example Sentences

  • Our business uses an application service provider to manage our customer relationship management software.
  • The application service provider we use offers a range of services, including data storage and network management.
  • Small businesses can benefit from using an application service provider to access software applications without having to invest in expensive hardware.
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