Microsoft goes after Google and Amazon with hybrid cloud push

With a series of cloud announcements on Monday, Microsoft moved to put a stake in the ground with hybrid cloud computing and emerge from the shadow of cloud rivals Google and Amazon.

"This helps get MicrosoftMicrosoft onto an equal footing with AmazonAmazon and GoogleGoogle, who are the most talked about cloud players today," said Dan Olds, an analyst with The Gabriel Consulting Group. "It's a smart move. It gives Microsoft a unique offering that can't easily be matched by its competitors right now." Alles zu Amazon auf Alles zu Google auf Alles zu Microsoft auf

At a news conference in San Francisco Monday afternoon, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and Scott Guthrie, the company's cloud division chief, pushed Azure, Microsoft's cloud platform, and announced a deal with Dell to offer a private cloud package of software and hardware for its Azure services.

Microsoft also announced its G-series of virtual machines, powered by Intel Xeon processors, premium storage for Azure and the availability of its cloud services in Australia; by the end of the year Azure should be operational in 19 regions around the world.

Microsoft is also launching the Azure Marketplace, where users can find services and apps.

"The enterprises of today and tomorrow demand a cloud platform that is reliable, scalable and flexible," Nadella said. "With more than 80% of the Fortune 500 on the Microsoft cloud, we are delivering the industry's most complete cloud -- for every business, every industry and every geography."

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