apps-on-tap
n. Software applications that are rented from and maintained by a third-party vendor over the Internet. Also: apps on tap.

Example Citations:
Think of e-services like you would turning on the tap today. When you jump in the shower you don’t think about where that water came from, what technology heated the water or how that water was delivered to your house. . . . At the end of the month a bill arrives and you pay only for the water you used. E-services will provide your business with computing resources under a utility model called an ‘apps-on-tap’, where you literally rent the application and only pay for as much as you use.
—“Taking the Fear out of Internet Business,” Profit, October 1, 1999

Today, US companies spend $300 billion a year on infotech. But, says Boston Consulting Group Inc., only 33 per cent of major software projects save money or boost sales. Corporations have realised that outsourcing IT could increase the efficiency of technology investments by 20 per cent. That’s because apps-on-tap lets companies pay for just the computing they actually use.
—Rahul Kumar, “World View: Net Sphere,” Computers Today, July 6, 2000

Earliest Citation:
Hewlett-Packard articulated the shape of its next-generation enterprise at a Palm Springs, Calif., conference this week, and will create a new computing colossus with the likes of Cisco, EMC, and Oracle.

These four companies and eventually others will cooperate to deliver an “information utility” composed of “apps on tap,” leased, and fee-for-usage enterprise computing power, and a panoply of computing appliances connected to an Internet-based IT infrastructure.
—David Pendery, “HP outlines shape of enterprises to come,” InfoWorld Daily News, October 3, 1998

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