Microsoft Accelerates and Simplifies Cloud Approach

Carl Weinschenk

NTT Communications said that it will use Microsoft’s new Azure Stack in the United States and Europe.

The goal of Azure Stack is to ease management of hybrid public and private clouds. It does this by bringing public cloud capabilities into the data center. NTT Com, through its managed services business, will work with Dell EMC and HPE to provide a one-stop shop for managed services across the organizations’ hybrid environment.

Azure Stack is a key element of Microsoft’s strategy, according to TechCrunch’s Frederic Lardinois. Late last month, Lardinois writes, Microsoft released Azure Stack to its hardware partners so they can put it through certification processes. “If developers can target a single platform for both the public and private cloud, the thinking goes, then hybrid deployments become almost trivial,” he wrote.

The platform initially will be available in 46 countries. The Azure Stack Development Kit, which is a single-server kit to help developers get acclimated, was also released.


The progress of Azure Stack was one of several announcements made at and before the Microsoft Inspire conference this week in Washington, D.C. Computerworld reported that Microsoft is consolidating Enterprise Mobility + Security (EMS) in the Azure portal. By combining Intune mobile application management tools, the Azure Active Directory and Information Protection in single console, Microsoft aims to create a unified administration experience and improve mobility management.

The Inspire conference seems to be a bit of a milestone for Microsoft. Eric Jhonsa runs through announcements made by the company before and during the conference in a very comprehensive rundown at TheStreet, Last week, there was a major restructuring of sales and marketing. That was followed this week with the Azure Stack, EMS and other announcements.

More important than any one of the introductions is the theme: the transition of Microsoft more fully to a software and services organization. That’s been going on for some time at Microsoft and across telecom and IT, of course. The announcements, Jhonsa suggests, will accelerate that trend at Microsoft.  He points to great increases in annual revenue from the commercial cloud initiatives and the corresponding impact on total Office and server products/servers revenue.

This, he writes, led to the announcements made during the past few weeks:

Microsoft, quite aware of all of this, seems eager to double down on what's working. Even if it means disrupting how major business units operate, and how products responsible for billions in annual sales are sold.

The move to the cloud is irreversible. Microsoft is doubling down and trying as best it can to simplify its offerings.

Carl Weinschenk covers telecom for IT Business Edge. He writes about wireless technology, disaster recovery/business continuity, cellular services, the Internet of Things, machine-to-machine communications and other emerging technologies and platforms. He also covers net neutrality and related regulatory issues. Weinschenk has written about the phone companies, cable operators and related companies for decades and is senior editor of Broadband Technology Report. He can be reached at cweinsch@optonline.net and via twitter at @DailyMusicBrk.


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