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  • Writer's pictureNisha Sashidharan, Head of Marketing

Understanding Microsoft Azure

Cloud computing is a well-adopted and well-ingrained service all over the world. Everyone working in the IT and ITES domain is aware of the cloud's benefits to businesses. Over the last few years, there has been a significant rise in the adoption of a host of Cloud infrastructure, private in-house cloud, hybrid clouds, and public cloud services that cater to organizations and consumers. The adoption of the Cloud has led to a decrease in investment in traditional IT.

Understanding Microsoft Azure

This blog aims to cover the importance of Cloud computing and explore Microsoft Azure and all that it has to offer. We hope to refresh your knowledge about Azure and enlighten those who are just starting their career in IT.

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Microsoft Azure is a cloud computing platform and an online portal to access and manage resources and services provided by Microsoft. Microsoft Azure was launched on 1 February 2010. It was originally announced as ‘Project Red Dog’ in 2008. It now caters to millions of applications, integrations, and customers. Azure provides over 200 products and services that are accessible over the public internet. Since its launch, it has grown to be the second-largest public cloud platform. According to Statista Microsoft Azure owns 22% of the market share in the second quarter of 2021. While the other two in the top three public cloud platforms; AWS (Amazon Web Services) owns 33% and GCP (Google Cloud Platform) owns 8%. Azure services are currently used by 80% of fortune 500 companies.

Exploring Microsoft Azure

It is a fast, flexible, and affordable platform. It currently has data centers in 42 regions all over the world. Its pricing and capabilities make it one of the best public clouds in the market. Azure is used for building, testing, deploying, and managing applications and services. It uses large-scale virtualization at Microsoft data centers worldwide and offers more than 600 services and 4 different forms of cloud computing: Infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), software as a service (SaaS), and serverless. Providing a range of cloud services such as compute, analytics, storage, and networking. Microsoft Azure enables subscribers to access all services by Azure to create cloud-based resources like virtual machines and databases; subscribers have the flexibility to pay-as-they-go and reduce fixed costs. It also supports multiple programming languages like C#, Nodes, Js, Java, etc.

How Microsoft Azure works

Microsoft Azure helps small to medium-sized businesses overcome and manage challenges and assist them in achieving their respective goals. Azure cloud service has established itself to sync well with legacy Microsoft solutions, which have been used by companies for eons now. It provides e-commerce solutions to finance and open-source technologies. Its ability to allow businesses to use tools and technologies flexibly has mapped a large part of the business sector.

Business software solutions powered by clouds have proven to be advantageous to businesses around the world more than ever. According to the latest statistics, Azure recorded 51% revenue growth in the recent quarter, which proved to be a remarkable feat. It includes 30% growth of Intelligent Cloud, 21% growth by productivity and business processes, and LinkedIn led the development of 46%.

Cloud Computing and its deployment models

Cloud computing is a platform that provides access to computing resources over the internet. Businesses are using it all around the world in different capacities. It delivers various services through the internet, including data storage, servers, databases, networking, and software. It can be considered a Virtual Hosting Solution that shifts all the crunching and processing data to massive computer clusters far away in cyberspace. Because of which data is available on a global network with facilities for accessing, sharing, and collaborating, irrespective of the users' location.

There are different types of clouds—public, private, and hybrid. Let us delve into them.

  • Provides their services on servers and storage on the internet.

  • Operated by third-party companies managing and controlling the hardware, software, and general infrastructure.

  • Follows a multi-tenant architecture with a pay-as-you-go pricing model.

  • Offers hassle-free infrastructure management has high scalability and maximum availability.

  • Only one specific organization owns a private cloud, and therefore it is also known as an internal or a corporate model.

  • The server can be hosted externally or located in the organization's on-site data center.

  • Follows a single-tenant architecture with on-premises hardware with direct control of underlying cloud infrastructure.

  • Provides wider opportunities for customizing the infrastructure to the company's requirements.

  • Has high security, privacy, and reliability.

3. Hybrid Cloud

  • Allows the movement of data and applications between public and private clouds.

  • Allows companies to mix and match the facets of the three types that best suit their requirements.

  • Provides more flexibility, deployment options, and optimization of existing infrastructure, security, and compliance for business.

  • Offers enhanced scalability, flexibility, and reasonable price.

Application of Microsoft Azure in various industries

Microsoft Azure for Finance

  • According to 451 Research data, 79% of banks use Microsoft Azure. Azure delivers differentiated customer experiences, drives real-time payments to manage risk across the enterprise, and optimize financial crime. Let's look at how Azure is used in the financial industry.

  • Personalize banking: based on accurate insights make every customer experience personalized through insights that reveal opportunities.

  • Modernize services: unlock global scale enable continuous innovation with hybrid or cloud strategy.

  • Detect fraud: identify suspicious behavior and assess risk while staying fully compliant with changing regulatory measures.

Microsoft Azure for Energy

It aims to optimize everything from fieldwork to customer experience. And modernize operations to speed response rates, boost efficiency and reduce costs. The azure digital twin is a solution that spreads across the energy industry and helps organizations realize value by empowering them to model and build a scalable and secure digital model of their environment. Azure tools and services help tackle challenges and optimize fieldwork to user experience end-to-end. Let's look at how Azure is used in the Oil and Gas industry:

  • It visualizes reservoir simulations to increase drilling hit rates using high-performance computing (HPC).

  • It improves decision-making and reservoir production using IoT drilling sensors and advanced analytics.

  • Manage and extend lifecycles with predictive maintenance using Azure IoT Solution Accelerators.

Microsoft Azure for Retail

Azure for retail aims to deliver personalized experiences, optimize supply chains, and reimagine multichannel retail. Let's look at how Azure is used in the retail industry:

  • Personalization: consolidate customer data sources for 360 views of your customer to drive relevant offers to grow revenue and improve customer experience.

  • Supply chain optimization: optimize supply chains and enhance product and service delivery with advanced insights and analytics which optimize planning and improve fulfillment and logistics.

  • Omni-channel optimization: provide a seamless customer journey that enables customers to switch platforms, devices, channels, while still having a connected multichannel retail experience.

Microsoft Azure for Health

Azure aims to deliver better health insights and outcomes by enhancing patient engagement, empowering health team collaboration, and improving clinical informatics with cloud capabilities. Let's look at hows Azure is used in the health industry.

  • Genomics: power genome sequencing and unlock new insights into human biology with the performance and scalability of a world-class supercomputing center.

  • Clinical Analytics: to build mission-critical solutions that analyze images, comprehend speech and make predictions, and imitate other intelligent human behaviors using Azure AI.

Microsoft Azure has a presence in a multitude of sectors. Microsoft Azure seems like a promising and sturdy platform for all types of businesses to rely upon. We at Extentia help you navigate through Azure's features and applications and help companies transform their business processes and enable growth. Let us accompany you in understanding the details of Azure and its tools and services. Make us a part of your journey in adopting this extremely remarkable technology.

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