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Since the launch of cloud speech recognition a few years ago, the difference between cloud and on-premise has been one of the top questions we’re asked.

We get it, it can be confusing and sometimes difficult to identify which hosting option is best for you.

Plus let’s face it, cloud technology is becoming popular in many other aspects of the digital world so it’s a good idea to understand the difference.

Keep reading to find out whether cloud or on-premise is for you – We promise to take it easy on you!

cloud or on-premise

On-Premise Hosting

It makes sense to start with what came first out of the two, and that is the on-premise hosting option.

On-premise quite literally does what it says on the tin by hosting your technology on your premises: On your business’s IT servers.

Although the on-premise software licences themselves are often cheaper, it comes with other costs that most people don’t predict, for example:

  • The cost of the actual server and the necessary hardware.
  • The installation and customization of the software and the server.
  • The service of the IT specialists needed to carry out the work.

Furthermore, on top of these initial costs, there are ongoing ones too, such as:

  • Fixes, patches and upgrades.
  • Performance tuning.
  • Hardware and software upgrades.
  • Rewriting integrations and customisations.
  • Software maintenance that entitles users to upgrades and fixes.
  • Software training – For new users.

Benefits of On-Premise


  • On-premise hosting provides full and complete control over IT infrastructure for the owner.


  • There is no reliance on outside factors such as internet connectivity as is the case with cloud hosting.


  • On-premise software is licenced via what we call a perpetual licence, this means that there is no reoccurring cost for third-party hosting software on your behalf.
cloud or on-premise

Cloud Hosting

umulus cloud!

The name cloud computing comes from the diagrams that were used by technology experts in its early discovery to demonstrate how it works; The cloud signifies the internet in terms of being something that cannot be fully described (Mother G).

Most cloud technologies are licenced via a subscription, and our range of cloud cloud-based speech technology is included.

Ultimately, you are paying for the privilege of someone else hosting your technology for you and doing all of the things mentioned in the on-premise section – Of course, with that comes less responsibility too.

Initial costs for cloud-based software include:

  • The subscription itself.
  • Implementation/customisation services.
  • Software training.

In terms of ongoing costs, you will see a much shorter list for the cloud offering in comparison to the on-premise option:

  • The subscription fee (often annual, but sometimes monthly).
  • Configuration.
  • Software training – For new users.

Benefits of Cloud

Long-Term Cost Savings

  • As mentioned earlier, by choosing cloud hosting, you would avoid the responsibility of maintaining a server as a third party will be doing that for you but remember you will have the full subscription to pay each year/month.


There is a misconception that cloud software isn’t as secure as on-premise due to you not physically maintaining it yourself.

However, 94% of businesses saw an improvement in security after adopting the cloud – This is purely because the cloud provider has a duty of care to their clients and therefore works around the clock to ensure everything is safe.

P.S. Make sure you check where the cloud server is hosted as in some cases it can be in parts of the world where data protection legislation is more relaxed than we have in the UK. 


With the pandemic taking the world by storm last year, businesses were forced to work remotely – This caused all sorts of problems for those with on-premise hosting. Our client, Ison Harrison found this out the hard way and this led them to switch to the Philips SpeechLive cloud solution.

Cloud hosting and software allow employees to access all applications and data from anywhere.


As we tell our clients when they toy between cloud or on-premise speech technology software, there is no right or wrong answer.

Yes, cloud technology is becoming increasingly popular, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it is right for you – It is all about your circumstances and objectives.

Hopefully, after reading this article you will have a general idea of whether cloud or on-premise is right for you, but if you’re still not sure, feel free to get in touch.

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