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New Microsoft Azure Geo opens for business in Australia

Posted on 27-Oct-2014 20:47 | Filed under: News

Today at TechEd Sydney, Microsoft’s Executive Vice President for Cloud + Enterprise, Scott Guthrie, joined Pip Marlow, country managing director, to declare the company’s newest Azure Geography (Geo) in Australia open for business. “We’re adding an Australian accent to our global cloud network,” Mr Guthrie said.

The new Azure Geo includes geographically redundant regions in New South Wales and Victoria. It will lower latency rates and address data sovereignty considerations for Microsoft customers and partners of all shapes and sizes who are embracing cloud computing to drive business model transformation, better manage variable workloads and deliver new digital services and experiences to customers and employees.

“From today, our goal is to create Australia’s best and most complete cloud, enabled by world class technology and a world class cloud ecosystem,” he said.

Ms Marlow added: “A world class cloud ecosystem requires a rock star team. We’re privileged to work with a team of thousands of Australian partners employing over 290,000 people who are helping our customers grow and transform their businesses. Almost 70 per cent of our partners are small businesses themselves, perfectly positioned to help our customers move to the cloud on their own terms,” she said.

Ms Marlow said that various factors were driving customer adoption of Microsoft Azure, led by a passion to deliver innovative solutions to fuel growth, drive efficiencies and help people do more and achieve more.

“When I started at Microsoft, we had a vision to put a PC on every desk - at home and at work. We believed we could help people realise their full potential. That vision hasn’t changed. We believe we can help people do more and achieve more, and help Australia be amazing, by providing the best and most complete cloud,” said Ms Marlow.

“With the cloud, the barriers to innovation are not just being lowered, they’re being smashed away,” she said.

“Customers tell me that Microsoft Azure frees them to focus on what they really want to do – enabling and adding value to the business, driving innovation and impact faster and being able to focus on their customers - while leaving Microsoft to manage what’s under the hood.

“CIOs tell me they love being able to turn infrastructure on at the tap of a key, and spin up or down their use of our cloud according to the needs of their businesses. Additionally, they like having the choice of a hybrid cloud approach with Microsoft. This means they can integrate and continue to leverage their on-premise investments while moving to the cloud. With the choice of public or private cloud too, our on-ramp works at the speed our customers want,” she said.

The newest Azure Geography brings the total number of regions to 19 globally, giving Microsoft enhanced capabilities to seamlessly deliver upon customers’ needs wherever they are in the world.

Microsoft also announced an expansion of its ExpressRoute offering in Australia via its existing global partnership with Equinix and forming a new alliance with Telstra. The expansion gives Australian customers and partners the option to create private connections between the Australia Azure Regions and infrastructure located on-premises or in a colocation environment. ExpressRoute connections do not go over the public Internet, and offer more reliability, faster speeds and lower latencies.

Erez Yarkoni, Executive Director Cloud, Telstra said, “As a Microsoft Azure ExpressRoute partner, our customers who want to access Microsoft’s Cloud for scalability and cost effectiveness, can now do so through our intelligent Next IP network. As customers increasingly take advantage of cloud infrastructure from global providers, choosing the right network remains a vital decision to run applications at peak performance.”

Equinix brings unique value to Microsoft Azure by enabling enterprise customers to deploy hybrid cloud environments that extend their networks and enhance on-premises investments. To complete the private connectivity model, customers can leverage a broad choice of network service providers that are part of Equinix’s business ecosystems.

ExpressRoute via Equinix will be generally available later this calendar year. ExpressRoute via Telstra will be available in the New Year.

Several New Zealand providers will also offer ExpressRoute, including:
  • Spark Wholesale uses a nationwide network and world-class technology to provide a range of products to telecommunication retailers. The company is extending its Nationwide Carrier Ethernet network to provide carrier grade, fully redundant Layer 2 Ethernet services direct to cloud providers in Australia. Spark’s Tasman Cloud Connect (TCC) Service establishes a dedicated, low latency secure private connection from data centre, office or co-location environments to Microsoft’s cloud via Azure’s ExpressRoute Service. TCC is designed to extend Azure to anywhere in New Zealand, effectively delivering an on LAN experience to Azure clients.
  • Snap provides broadband and phone services to New Zealand businesses and organisations. Snap’s Microsoft Azure ExpressRoute offering allows customers to extend their network directly into the Microsoft Azure Australian data centres. Snap’s partnership with Microsoft enables customers to extend their private networks to Microsoft Azure using fast, low-latency network connections. Customers are able to establish dedicated, private, high-throughput network connectivity between their on-premises IT infrastructure and Microsoft Azure. This product leverages the network services offered by Snap to extend customers’ existing networks to the Microsoft's Windows Azure infrastructure without having to route private network traffic over the public Internet.