Microsoft plans data centers in Asia-Pacific region

2 Oct 2014 by Technology

"The data center market in the Asia-Pacific region is gaining a lot of traction from organizations looking to expand their operations and offerings to a larger, worldwide audience. Many businesses have already established facilities in this area, while others are making plans to expand their footprint. Computer software company Microsoft is taking steps to not only deploy data centers in this region, but to also improve its offerings for users in this domain. Within the next year, Microsoft will have set up new data centers in India to provide locally hosted cloud services and other services.

India data centers hold possibility for growth
While Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella did not go into detail about how many facilities would be instated in India during his recent visit to the area, it marks a significant investment in the region that could improve India's tech standing. In fact, the data centers could launch demand in the Indian cloud services market that represents a $2 trillion opportunity, according to The Register. With over 250 million individuals in India utilizing Internet-connected devices, the potential is there to accelerate cloud services and other technological innovations in the area.

As countries become more hesitant to store data outside their borders, Microsoft's move will encourage more users to engage in the cloud and be more comfortable with the technology by providing locally hosted servers and support. Within the past year, Microsoft's revenue from cloud services has grown 100 percent in the area. Although India is still a small part of Microsoft's user base, the increase shows that users are becoming more interested in what this technology offers.

""Data center market in India is seeing huge growth powered by increased digitization and use of mobility for both business and leisure,"" Wipro Limited CEO TK Kurien said in the statement, according to International Business Times.

Putting data centers within the region will not only help decrease operational costs but will also bring better benefits that would not be available with remote facilities. Locally hosted servers will have reduced latency, and better observe regional data security and privacy regulations. This ensures that users not only can quickly access their data, but will also be compliant with established procedures.

""At the same time, there are sections of industry concerned about data sovereignty and cost of connectivity,"" Kurien told DatacenterDynamics. ""Microsoft's plans to launch commercial cloud services from India would address those customers, specifically in the BFSI (banking, financial services and institutions) sector and government entities.""

Data centers planned for South Korea
India is not the only area in the Asia-Pacific region that Microsoft has its eye on - the company also recently announced plans for growing its footprint in South Korea. In late September, Microsoft and government officials were close to making a deal that would drive the creation of a data center in Busan, South Korea's largest port city. However, the project is not a small matter. Through a joint effort, the country is planning to invest $5.2 billion while Microsoft will put in $450 million in the project over the next five years. These funds will be put toward establishing a facility on an 1.8 million-square-foot site, but all other details have yet to be worked out.

As with the India plans, Microsoft aimed to provide private network connectivity to its Azure cloud services for local users, according to Data Center Knowledge contributor Yevgeniy Sverdlik. Doing so would significantly improve the performance of the offerings in the area and encourage users to adopt cloud for their needs. With the demand increasing and the amount of funds put in, the results could be significant for revenue gain in the Asia-Pacific area.

""By either establishing fully fledged cloud data centers in major metropolitan centers or by offering private network connectivity to its Azure cloud from colocation facilities, Microsoft improves performance of cloud services for local users,"" Sverdlik noted.

Data centers designed for user support
As Microsoft and other companies gear up to move to the Asia-Pacific area, they must consider how to design their facilities in a way that will most cost-effective and available for supporting users. With these factors laid out, organizations can better gear their services for local utilization. Demand for technology services in the Asia-Pacific region is increasing, but for data centers to be successful, they must be able to provide guidance and reliable uptime."

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