What is Microsoft Azure?
Microsoft Azure, often referred to as Azure is a cloud computing service operated by Microsoft for application management via Microsoft-managed data centres. It provides Software as a service (SaaS), Platform as a service (PaaS) and Infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and supports many different programming languages, tools, and frameworks, including both Microsoft-specific and third-party software and systems. It provides a range of cloud services, including compute, analytics, storage and networking. Users can pick and choose from these services to develop and scale new applications, or run existing applications in the public cloud.
The Azure platform aims to help businesses manage challenges and meet their organizational goals. It offers tools that support all industries — including e-commerce, finance and a variety of Fortune 500 companies – and is compatible with open source technologies. This provides users with the flexibility to use their preferred tools and technologies.
Things that you should know about Azure:
• It was launched on February 1, 2010, significantly later than its main competitor, AWS.
• It’s free to start and follows a pay-per-use model, which means you pay only for the services you opt for.
• Azure supports multiple programming languages, including Java, Node Js, and C#.
• Another benefit of Azure is the number of data centers it has around the world. There are 42 Azure data centers spread around the globe, which is the highest number of data centers for any cloud platform. Also, Azure is planning to get 12 more data centers, which will increase the number of data centers to 54, shortly.
Microsoft Azure Features
Now that we know exactly what is Azure, let us see what its features are.
• Disaster Recovery: Since data is not stored on a single physical computer and instead it is present in different geographical locations, it will be much safer in the time of disasters. Even if one location undergoes some natural calamity, other locations are not harmed, and hence your data is safe.
• Security: Azure is continuously updated and that makes it secure. Security Development Lifecycle makes sure that every development phase is safe and secure.
• Flexibility: With Azure, you can scale your storage capacity. Recently, the service from Microsoft even gave updates on its increased flexibility in terms of virtual machine size. These reserved instances can decrease the Cloud Computing cost.
• Cost: Using physical hardware for the deployment of applications comes up with emptying your pockets. Training people on how to work with it requires a lot of time and money. Azure is the solution to all those problems as it is cheap in terms of hardware and manpower.
• Applications: With service offerings like Visual Studio Team Services, Visual Studio Application Insights, Microsoft makes developing and testing mission-critical apps a snap. Move an application from test to production mode on the fly across a globally distributed network. Microsoft also offers substantial licensing discounts for migrating their existing apps to Azure, which represents even more opportunity for savings.
How does Azure work?
Microsoft Azure is a cloud computing platform. Azure manages and maintains hardware, infrastructure, and resources in data centers. These assets can be accessed by individuals and organizations over the internet for free or on a pay-per-use basis. This allows Azure’s users to tap into powerful, often cost-prohibitive hardware and solutions without a large upfront investment.
Services offered with Microsoft Azure
Azure delivers more than 600 services. Some of the major services are listed under:
• Computational Services
• Storage Services
• Mobile Services
• Data Management
• Media Services
• Management Services
• Developer Services
• Microsoft Machine Learning
Who uses Microsoft Azure ?
Due to its accessible nature and massive scalability, Azure can be and is used by companies of every size and circumstance, from garage start-ups to Fortune 500 companies; in fact 90% the Fortune 500 trust run processes on the Microsoft cloud.
The reliability offered by Microsoft’s cloud services is also a bonus for businesses. Azure’s 99.99% uptime guarantee, huge range of disaster recovery plans, and thorough backup systems mean organizations, their processes, and their data, are in safe hands.
What is Azure used for?
Azure services include Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), Software as a Service (SaaS), and serverless. These cloud services can be used for things like storage, networking, compute, and analytics.
What services compete with Azure?
Azure is a clear second among cloud providers — well behind Amazon Web Services, but well ahead of any other competition. Among the other competitors, Google Cloud Platform offers a similar set of cloud-based infrastructure and app services using the search giant’s global infrastructure. Other companies, including Salesforce and Oracle, offer a subset of cloud-based services that are aimed primarily at those firms’ existing customers.
How much does Azure cost?
Due to the number of services available, the cost of Azure varies enormously depending on which parts of it a business decides to use, and how much they actually use it. There are no upfront costs involved with Azure, and customers only pay for what they use, with many services charged by the hour.
The above services are only a glimpse of what Azure can do for your business. Many enterprises across the globe are utilizing the capabilities of Microsoft Azure applications to optimize their business models as it revolutionizes overall infrastructure and application performance.
We at Realxposure are technologists with a keen understanding of business environments, challenges, and initiatives. With an established track record Microsoft Azure, let our team of experts bring their decades of technical and consulting knowledge, project leadership, and an understanding of complex problem-solving to help your business grow leaps & bounds.