Microsoft Azure is expanding its cloud computing portfolio with additional multi-cloud and multi-edge hybrid capabilities including Azure Arc and Azure Stack updates, a fully managed communication platform, new cloud region availability zones and its next-generation Azure VMware Solution.
The No. 2 cloud provider unveiled the deepened catalog of product and services—and the targeted release date for its first industry-specific cloud platform—for Tuesday’s start of its Microsoft Ignite 2020 conference for IT professionals and developers.
“Since the beginning, Azure has always been hybrid by design, providing customers consistency and flexibility in meeting their business needs and empowering them to invent with purpose,” said Julia White, corporate vice president of Microsoft Azure. “As we expand our Azure hybrid capabilities, we give customers a holistic and seamless approach to run and manage their apps anywhere across on-premises, multi-cloud and the edge.”
Microsoft shifted the usually in-person conference—its last major event of the year —to a free, online-only event due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Its announcements included the public preview of Azure Communication Services, which is built natively on top of Azure. Microsoft is calling it the first fully managed communication platform offering from a major cloud provider.
“In this remote-first world, businesses are looking to quickly adapt to customers’ needs and connect with them through engaging communication experiences,” said Scott Van Vliet, Microsoft’s corporate vice president of intelligent communication.
“Building new communication solutions or integrating them into existing applications can be complex and time-consuming, often requiring considerable investment and specialized expertise. Azure Communication Services makes it easy to add voice and video calling, chat and SMS text message capabilities to mobile apps, desktop applications and websites with just a few lines of code.”
Click through to read about the new Microsoft Azure features, which also include Azure Cognitive Services enhancements, the private preview of Azure Orbital, the general availability of Azure SQL Edge, a Cosmos DB serverless option, an integrated SaaS collaboration with New York City’s Datadog and Delta Engine For Azure Databricks.