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Azure is one of Microsoft’s largest and fastest growing businesses, and a significant focus for a company that describes its business strategy as “mobile first, cloud first.” And given Microsoft’s strength in industry and enterprise line-of-business, it’s easy to see that Azure is well positioned for continued growth in one of the most significant areas in technology.


Let me first begin by describing what Microsoft Azure is, in a broad classification, Microsoft Azure is a cloud-based computing system that is integrated and managed through Microsoft’s global network of data centers. This platform is used to build, deploy and manage applications. Azure provides all: a software-as-a-service, a platform-as-a-service as well as an infrastructure-as-a-service. These varied services make it the most opted option on the internet. Thus, the cloud is luring all organizations, big and small which makes it a great venture to step into.

Another thing that makes Azure big and limitless is the fact that it is not centralized to just Microsoft Datacenters but Partners and Hosting Providers as well. It facilitates setting up Datacenters using the Azure Stack. It facilitates an access to Azure Service Fabric that can be used by any organization to implement its own platform as the desired service.

As cloud grants its users an access to applications, information without the use of any hardware or physical device, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that Cloud computing is opening a whole new world of jobs, services, platforms, applications, and a lot more. The list of possibilities that Cloud carries with itself is limitless. So, there is no doubt about the future scope of the cloud. The need of the hour is to learn about Cloud and gain an expertise over it, as the number of IT professionals capable of working on the Cloud is quite less than the market demand.

It’s true that AWS is more popular with developers, many of whom characterize Azure as being #2 behind AWS. But that’s a subjective statement and depends on how you count. For example, Azure has more data centers and more regions than AWS. It has more regulatory and security certifications and provides SLAs and indemnification for many more of its core services. And Microsoft also has the largest partner network in the world.

Finally, next wave of technology is about data. According to IDC, the total amount of digital data created worldwide will hit 180 zettabytes in 2025. Driven by an expected 80 billion connected devices and sensors that same year and that data need to be storedand most of it will be stored in the cloud because most of the systems and services that can process and analyze that information run in the cloud. Big Data clusters, advanced analytics and BI services, machine learning, and AI, all provided by platforms like Azure are the engines of the Information Age.

So however you look at Azure, its future is bright and there’s no reason to believe otherwise. Azure is already more than just a cloud; it has become a critical infrastructure for the connected world and will be one of the major enablers of the next technology wave, data, and AI.

Oh, and just to close the loop. It’s also worth noting that some say the “Pay As You Go” model is going away, but this is a mis-characterization of what’s happening. This is about partner licensing options. Azure will continue to maintain an option for purchasing services directly.