News

Microsoft: Azure More Developer-Friendly Than Ever

The company says more than half of the Fortune 500 is on Azure.

Microsoft's vision of software development is becoming increasingly tied to the cloud. That vision was further laid out during this week's Build conference.

Microsoft made several announcements concerning the Azure cloud platform, chief among them the general availability of Azure Mobile Services and Azure Web Sites.

Azure Mobile Services allows developers to store data on Microsoft's cloud platform for their mobile applications. The services support Windows, Android and iOS apps, and provide a way to authenticate users and send push notifications. They're also designed to scale.

Azure Web Sites, which has been in preview for more than a year, allows developers to provision Web apps on the Azure cloud. The services use free server-side Web frameworks, such as Microsoft's ASP.NET. "Developers using Visual Studio can right-click on any ASP.NET site in Solution Explorer to deploy their web site," Microsoft's product Web site explains.

Satya Nadella, president of Microsoft's Server and Tools Group, showed off the new services, saying IT is in the midst of an evolution of the back end, primarily in the cloud.

"The context of back end is the apps and the technologies, as well as the devices and the experiences, that all of us collecting are building," Nadella said. "There's not an embedded system, not a sensor, not a device experience that is not connected back to a cloud service."

Nadella also offered a preview of Windows Azure BizTalk Services, new auto-scaling capability baked into the cloud platform. Azure BizTalk provides a basic set of rules for dynamic scaling of datacenter compute capacity. The feature will allow developers to set the maximum and minimum number of servers to use at a given time. Microsoft was promoting this feature at the conference primarily as a cost-saver.

Microsoft gave a sneak preview of application access enhancements for Windows Azure Active Directory, which provides organizations and ISVs with a single sign-on experience to access cloud-based applications.

Acknowledging the importance of the cloud, Microsoft has adopted an even faster cadence for releases of new server and cloud technologies, Nadella said, and he shared some statistics with attendees gathered in San Francisco's Moscone center: The company now has more than 250,000 Azure customers and it's adding a thousand customers a day. More than 50 percent of Fortune 500 companies are using Azure, and the company counts 65 million active users.

About the Author

John K. Waters is the editor in chief of a number of Converge360.com sites, with a focus on high-end development, AI and future tech. He's been writing about cutting-edge technologies and culture of Silicon Valley for more than two decades, and he's written more than a dozen books. He also co-scripted the documentary film Silicon Valley: A 100 Year Renaissance, which aired on PBS.  He can be reached at [email protected].


comments powered by Disqus

Featured

  • Xamarin.Forms 5 Preview Ships Ahead of .NET 6 Transition to MAUI

    Microsoft shipped a pre-release version of Xamarin.Forms 5 ahead of a planned transition to MAUI, which will take over beginning with the release of .NET 6 in November 2021.

  • ML.NET Improves Object Detection

    Microsoft improved the object detection capabilities of its ML.NET machine learning framework for .NET developers, adding the ability to train custom models with Model Builder in Visual Studio.

  • More Improvements for VS Code's New Python Language Server

    Microsoft announced more improvements for the new Python language server for Visual Studio Code, Pylance, specializing in rich type information.

  • Death of the Dev Machine?

    Here's a takeaway from this week's Ignite 2020 event: An advanced Azure cloud portends the death of the traditional, high-powered dev machine packed with computing, memory and storage components.

  • COVID-19 Is Ignite 2020's Elephant in the Room: 'Frankly, It Sucks'

    As in all things of our new reality, there was no escaping the drastic changes in routine caused by the COVID-19 pandemic during Microsoft's big Ignite 2020 developer/IT pro conference, this week shifted to an online-only event after drawing tens of thousands of in-person attendees in years past.

Upcoming Events