At some point most of us have either rented a car or have considered doing so. Some of us live in rented apartments. Until movies became readily available over the internet, renting them was a common practice. Clearly, in certain instances we see value in renting a commodity instead of buying it. The reason is simple – it’s generally cost-effective to rent something than to buy it outright, especially when you intend to use the commodity for a short interval. 1E’s Shopping, the app store for the enterprise, applies the same real world concept to usage of applications. In Shopping, you can rent an application for a specific interval based on need. All the administrator needs to do is to configure the application as one that is available for Application Rental.

Let’s understand the feature a little more – From an end user’s perspective, all you need to do is make the request for an application, as you would usually do. Since the Shopping administrator has configured the application as one that can be rented, you get the application rental option when you shop for it. In addition to making it very easy for you to rent the application, Shopping also empowers your organization’s administrators to control precisely how applications can be rented. For example, the administrator can control:

  1. Rental Period: For how many days can the application be rented
  2. Extension Period: Whether any grace period will be provided (if so, for how many days)
  3. No. of extensions provided: How many extensions to the application rental period can be provided
  4. License Hold Days: Number of days for which the application cannot be re-rented

The benefits are obvious – Since you use the application only for a specific period, the application license is returned back to the central stockpile as soon as your application rental period expires, thus making it available for somebody else to use it. If the application was not rented, the user would have to be proactive in uninstalling the application when the usage declines. How often does that happen realistically? Alternatively, some administrator will have to keep a tab on the Application usage with the idea of pulling the Application back. That too is an administrative overhead. With Shopping’s Application Rental, all this is automated and offered as a self-serve option to the end users.

That’s not all. Shopping Application Rental can also be used for temporary business as usual activities such as providing AD (Active Directory) membership on demand. The AD rental can come in handy when you need AD group memberships to perform certain tasks, ones that you don’t perform frequently, for a short duration. Think of a file-share access, deployment server access etc. In case your organization wants to maintain tight control over the AD group memberships, you can have an administrator drive this function by using the Shop on-behalf of feature. This feature will let the administrator shop on behalf of specific users for this membership. With Application Rental, and many other cost saving features, the intention is to help out Customer run IT for less.

If there is anything you want to share about the Application Rental feature or Shopping (in general), feel free to leave a comment in the space below. To learn more about the software, you can visit either our Shopping microsite, or our LinkedIn Showcase page.

Amar Kaldate
Amar Kaldate is Technical Lead - QA at 1E. He contributes to the design and evolution of Shopping. Amar has been in 1E for more than 5 years and he plays a significant role in contributing to improvements of the engineering process. Amar is also an acute movie-buff who believes in this simple doctrine: "Cinema is a matter of what's in the frame and what's out."