"Many business communications tools and services have become essential in today’s competitive marketplace, and leading technology companies are more often working together to provide solutions that enable the enterprise to reach new levels of growth. One such partnership comes from Microsoft and Equinix.
At the beginning of October, Microsoft announced the release of a slew of new enterprise products and cloud services aimed at assisting modern businesses in leveraging cloud computing technology to conquer some of the top challenges facing IT.
“As enterprises move to the cloud they are going to bet on vendors that have best-in-class software as a service applications, operate a global public cloud that supports a broad ecosystem of third party services, and deliver multi-cloud mobility through true hybrid solutions,” said Satya Nadella, cloud and enterprise executive vice president at Microsoft.
The new offerings from Microsoft include:
Windows Server 2012 R2, System Center 2012 R2 and Visual Studio 2013 to assist businesses in the development and management of hybrid infrastructure and modern applications
Windows Azure and Windows Azure US Government Cloud to encourage continued adoption of enterprise cloud solutions
SQL Server 2014 preview and Windows Azure HDInsight Service to foster data analytics initiatives
Windows Intune and the Microsoft Remote Desktop app to help organizations contend with increasing demands for mobility and remote work options
Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online Fall ’13 and Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2013 R2 to boost customer interactions
While these newly-launched products and services share the common themes of enabling the enterprise to excel and encourage the use of flexible cloud resources, there is another development at play that might make more of an impact.
Strategic Partnerships Bring Best-in-Class Solutions to the Enterprise
As part of Microsoft’s release, the company announced a number of strategic partnerships to extend the impact of its business solutions.
“As another part of this effort to reduce cloud adoption barriers, Microsoft on Monday announced a strategic partnership with Equinix Inc.,” the company stated in a release. “Building on recently announced partnerships with AT&T and others, this alliance will provide customers with even more options for private and fast connections to the cloud. Customers will be able to connect their networks with Windows Azure at Equinix exchange locations for greater throughput, availability and security features.”
As a major provider of data center services in more than 30 markets around the globe, Equinix is in a strong position to further bolster enterprise efforts to utilize the best available services to grow. Equinix detailed its partnership with Microsoft in a recent release, noting that providing cloud connectivity to the Windows Azure platform is good news for businesses looking to build, deploy and manage applications.
Equinix has long prided itself on offering data center services that serve as interconnection points for businesses looking to adopt the cloud, and the company stated that the new partnerships will be conducting early trials by the end of this year. The alliance with Microsoft is aimed at providing seamless integration of cloud services and internal applications, without exorbitant costs.
“Equinix’s neutral data center environment offers security, performance and a globally consistent experience for enterprises that are moving into the cloud,” said Chris Sharp, general manager of cloud at Equinix. “Through our relationship with Microsoft we can provide customers with direct connectivity to Windows Azure, opening up new opportunities in hybrid cloud computing.”
Technology Drives Growth
These type of multi-service partnerships are especially beneficial for the businesses. Microsoft cited new research from the Boston Consulting Group that demonstrates how technology is key to driving job and revenue growth from small and midsize enterprises. With increased access to technology and business tools, the economy as a whole could see some notable improvements.
The study specifically looked at just five countries and found that if SMEs within these areas were to collectively leverage technology, they could create as many as 6.2 million new jobs and experience $770 billion in revenue growth. Since Microsoft products and services such as Microsoft Office are preferred by 80 percent of small businesses and 95 percent of tech-leading SMEs, its recent developments and partnerships may have positioned Microsoft as an important contributor to global economic growth."