Category Archives: Microsoft Blog

Microsoft Blog

Watch live as Satya Nadella, other key senior leaders, speak at the Worldwide Partner Conference on Wednesday

Several senior leaders, including Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, will speak from 5:45 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. PT Wednesday, as part of the Vision keynotes at the Worldwide Partner Conference in Washington, D.C. The Vision keynotes will be streamed live online on the WPC 2014 site.

Nadella will share his vision for joint success with Microsoft partners in a mobile-first, cloud-first world.

To learn more, head over to the Worldwide Partner Conference site.

Suzanne Choney
Microsoft News Center Staff

Microsoft Windows

It is amazing what Microsoft created a long time ago. So many things run Windows. Cars, ATMs, and much more. No wonder Microsoft grew so large.

Microsoft is such a large entity, entire divisions can fail upon one wrong decision. Some how though they manage to put out new products and services every year that change the world.

I run a Mac at work and everyone around me always has so much bad to say about Windows. I can run any Operating System but still after all these years Windows does more. Linux is great, Mac OS is cool. Linux runs the Web! Windows runs the world.  That may be changing but I don’t see an end in site IMO. 🙂

Yeah I know Linux and Mac guys I hear it all day at work!

Microsoft provides one-year update on CityNext initiative at Worldwide Partner Conference

Exactly one year since launch, the momentum generated by Microsoft CityNext is significant and continues to grow. More than 200 partners have already signed on to Microsoft CityNext and are actively delivering more than 700 solutions worldwide – helping to build more modern, safer, healthier and educated cities.

In the last year alone, through a variety of high-profile events with city leaders, we established key alliances with cities across every continent – providing our partners with innovative solutions to help customers not only do more with less, but also to come up with new ways to transform using less resources. I call this “New with Less.”

WPC 2013 was a very special event for me. In front of a crowd of trusted partners, I had the honor of announcing a new partner-driven initiative called Microsoft CityNext. With the launch of this initiative, Microsoft combined our two decades of experience working with cities with our expert partner network to create a new way for city leaders to solve today’s challenges and modernize for the next generation.

As more and more people move to cities to build better lives, today’s mayors and city officials face tremendous challenges. For the first time in history, more than 50 percent of the world’s population lives in urban areas. By 2050, nearly 70 percent of the global population will live in cities. That’s an additional 2.3 billion more people than live in cities today. As cities experience this growing migration, they are also confronting budget cuts, limited natural resources, aging citizens, outdated infrastructure, growing energy demands, privacy and security concerns and rigorous regulatory requirements.

Fortunately, visionary city leaders across the globe are reaching out for a trusted advisor in their journey to realize the vision of a truly connected city. Reflecting back on all that we’ve accomplished with our strong partner network around the world, we are very proud of what we achieved in just one year.

These partners are leveraging cloud, mobile, social and big data to deploy solutions that engage the heart of all cities – their citizens. By helping students achieve more through rich learning experiences; giving isolated populations access to government services; providing the elderly with healthcare from the comfort of their own homes; getting commuters home sooner; and community safety, partners are helping cities use technology to create sustainable economic futures. They are also finding success in scaling their solutions to meet the needs of cities across the world – expanding their offerings and driving real impact outside their communities.

For example, Swan Island Networks has been working in cities like Denver, Colorado to offer the TIES® for Microsoft CityNext – a dashboard based on the Microsoft Azure cloud that helps city officials maintain better situational awareness in high-stakes environments. On Tuesday at WPC, we were delighted by Swan Island’s newest product announcement – a new Disaster Response Edition of its TIES® for Microsoft CityNext product to help government organizations and NGOs around the world better prepare for and respond to disasters and emergencies.

We were also excited to honor ICONICS as this year’s Microsoft CityNext Partner of the Year. The company is offering cities from Rome to Beijing a unique platform that provides a connected foundation for cities to build on, utilizing solutions and apps across core city functional solution areas and scenarios including building automation, energy management and sustainability. Using these solutions, cities are able to address challenges, spur economic growth and transform.

Working with Microsoft and partners Hexacta and Kwan, Buenos Aires is leveraging technology and community programs to prepare students for 21st century jobs, enhance transportation and safety services, and invest in local developers to spur the economy. The city is now using a City Dashboard that consolidates data from multiple IT systems into a single interface to provide city decision makers with insight into project progress and citizen needs. In addition, its Windows-based City Phone comes pre-loaded with custom-built apps that provide citizens with access to traffic, parking and public transit information. The city also offers a Young Professionals Program and the Microsoft YouthSpark program, which provides youth with job training, career advice and opportunities to gain valuable technology skills. The Microsoft BizSpark program further provides new IT businesses with access to tools and guidance that help them succeed.

These are just some of the partners that believe in our vision and are betting on our technology solutions. For more partner examples, I encourage you to check out the Digital WPC blog today for Microsoft Channel Chief Phil Sorgen’s post highlighting other great examples.

On the one-year anniversary of CityNext, Microsoft and our partners are proud of our achievements, excited by the momentum and energized by the opportunities to build on our success. If all this can happen in just one year, imagine what we can achieve together in the next 50.

To learn more about Microsoft CityNext, go to: http://www.microsoft.com/citynext.

CityNext_Infographic_All_Up_FY15_PNG

At Worldwide Partner Conference, it’s mobile-first, cloud-first world front and center

Microsoft is integrating the cloud into the Microsoft Partner Network, with three new cloud-focused competencies based on performance for Office 365 and Microsoft Azure to be offered to better help partners serve customers. The announcement was made Monday by Phil Sorgen, Microsoft corporate vice president (pictured above), Worldwide Partner Channel, at the Worldwide Partner Conference 2014 in Washington, D.C.

Azure Machine Learning University, a portfolio of online self-service learning assets, was also announced to help partners get started with Azure ML.

To learn more about these announcements and others, read Sorgen’s post on the Worldwide Partner Conference 2014 Channel.

Suzanne Choney
Microsoft News Center Staff

Microsoft acquires InMage: Better business continuity with Azure

I’m pleased to announce that Microsoft has acquired InMage, an innovator in the emerging area of cloud-based business continuity.

Our customers tell us that business continuity – the ability to backup, replicate and quickly recover data and applications in case of a system failure – is incredibly important. After all, revenue, supply chains, customer loyalty, employee productivity and more are on the line. It’s also very complicated and expensive to do. CIOs consistently rank business continuity as a top priority, but often don’t have the budgets or time to do it right.

As the productivity and platform company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world, Microsoft is committed to solving this challenge for customers. This acquisition will accelerate our strategy to provide hybrid cloud business continuity solutions for any customer IT environment, be it Windows or Linux, physical or virtualized on Hyper-V, VMware or others. This will make Azure the ideal destination for disaster recovery for virtually every enterprise server in the world. As VMware customers explore their options to permanently migrate their applications to the cloud, this will also provide a great onramp.

In January, Forrester Research identified the company as an enabling technology that plays a key role in delivery for top Disaster Recovery-as-a-Service providers HP and Sungard.* In May, the company won a Penton Media Best of TechEd award. Most importantly, customers across a variety of industries, including financial services, healthcare and government, rely on InMage technology to keep their organizations up and running. An IT manager at MCR Safety, a leading manufacturer of personal protective equipment, put it simply: “The technology is like a high-performance DVR to protect our entire IT infrastructure and business.”

With the completion of this acquisition, we are now working to integrate the InMage Scout technology into our Azure Site Recovery service in order to give customers a simple, cost-effective way to ensure business continuity with the power and scale of the Azure global cloud. The company already announced its plan to enable data migration to Azure with Scout. Existing customers can continue to use the InMage products and services they trust and, moving forward, customers will acquire Scout through Azure Site Recovery. We will also continue to work with InMage service provider partners, as well as new partners, to give our mutual customers a range of solution options.

As Laura DuBois, Research Vice President for IDC, said, “This is a great move to meet important customer needs with the cloud as a target for disaster recovery. InMage has distinguished itself in a poorly understood and underserved market.”

Enterprise customers are looking for the best, most valuable ways to take advantage of the cloud. Business continuity is often a great place to start, which is why we are very focused on delivering strong solutions in this area for our customers. It is a key element of our continued effort to deliver a consistent hybrid platform and a broad range of services that connect customer, partner and Microsoft clouds.

*The Forrester Wave™: Disaster-Recovery-As-A-Service Providers, Q1 2014, Forrester Research, Inc., January 17, 2014

Microsoft acquires InMage: Better business continuity with Azure

I’m pleased to announce that Microsoft has acquired InMage, an innovator in the emerging area of cloud-based business continuity.

Our customers tell us that business continuity – the ability to backup, replicate and quickly recover data and applications in case of a system failure – is incredibly important. After all, revenue, supply chains, customer loyalty, employee productivity and more are on the line. It’s also very complicated and expensive to do. CIOs consistently rank business continuity as a top priority, but often don’t have the budgets or time to do it right.

As the productivity and platform company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world, Microsoft is committed to solving this challenge for customers. This acquisition will accelerate our strategy to provide hybrid cloud business continuity solutions for any customer IT environment, be it Windows or Linux, physical or virtualized on Hyper-V, VMware or others. This will make Azure the ideal destination for disaster recovery for virtually every enterprise server in the world. As VMware customers explore their options to permanently migrate their applications to the cloud, this will also provide a great onramp.

In January, Forrester Research identified the company as an enabling technology that plays a key role in delivery for top Disaster Recovery-as-a-Service providers HP and Sungard.* In May, the company won a Penton Media Best of TechEd award. Most importantly, customers across a variety of industries, including financial services, healthcare and government, rely on InMage technology to keep their organizations up and running. An IT manager at MCR Safety, a leading manufacturer of personal protective equipment, put it simply: “The technology is like a high-performance DVR to protect our entire IT infrastructure and business.”

With the completion of this acquisition, we are now working to integrate the InMage Scout technology into our Azure Site Recovery service in order to give customers a simple, cost-effective way to ensure business continuity with the power and scale of the Azure global cloud. The company already announced its plan to enable data migration to Azure with Scout. Existing customers can continue to use the InMage products and services they trust and, moving forward, customers will acquire Scout through Azure Site Recovery. We will also continue to work with InMage service provider partners, as well as new partners, to give our mutual customers a range of solution options.

As Laura DuBois, Research Vice President for IDC, said, “This is a great move to meet important customer needs with the cloud as a target for disaster recovery. InMage has distinguished itself in a poorly understood and underserved market.” 

Enterprise customers are looking for the best, most valuable ways to take advantage of the cloud. Business continuity is often a great place to start, which is why we are very focused on delivering strong solutions in this area for our customers. It is a key element of our continued effort to deliver a consistent hybrid platform and a broad range of services that connect customer, partner and Microsoft clouds.

*The Forrester Wave™: Disaster-Recovery-As-A-Service Providers, Q1 2014, Forrester Research, Inc., January 17, 2014

Weekend Reading: July 11th Edition — A message from Satya Nadella, Lumia 930 on sale, Microsoft Azure StorSimple previewed

It may feel like the dog days of summer where you sit, but in this edition of Weekend Reading, we’re still going full steam ahead with an important message from CEO Satya Nadella and a busy July ahead.

Check out how summer sizzles at Microsoft in Washington state, Washington D.C. and beyond …

In a message to employees, Nadella kicked off what’s going to be a big One Microsoft month by highlighting the company’s charge to enable people to thrive in a mobile-first and cloud-first world, and harkening to what he said his first day as CEO: “Our industry does not respect tradition – it only respects innovation. … We must all understand and embrace what only Microsoft can contribute to the world and how we can once again change the world.”

The Worldwide Partner Conference starts Sunday in Washington D.C. and Phil Sorgen, Microsoft’s corporate vice president of the Worldwide Partner Channel has a preview that includes Microsoft Azure StorSimple, a hybrid cloud storage solution that makes managing a company’s growing volume of data more efficient and an Azure Machine Learning technology that partners can use to build advanced analytic cloud services for their customers, in minutes.

Did we say mobile first? The super sleek, brilliantly crafted Nokia Lumia 930 went on sale this week. It includes a 20-megapixel PureView camera with ZEISS optics and optical image stabilization and is the world‘s first smartphone that can capture and playback high-quality audio in Dolby Surround Sound.

WR_2

Also next week is the 2014 Microsoft Research Faculty Summit, and our annual glimpse into the future of computing. The event brings 350 elite academic researchers to Redmond, Washington. Watch the live stream beginning July 14.

In other news, Yammer Enterprise has been added to all Office 365 Midsize Business and Office 365 Education plans, which gives these customers Yammer Enterprise licenses and no longer requires them to purchase licenses for users on their external networks.

If you’re headed to the ballpark this weekend, bring some Windows Phone apps along to help you capture all the action. The Nokia Camera app lets you take a series of fast-action photos, on-the-go editor Adobe Photoshop Express will help enhance those images, and use Creative Studio’s Focus + Blur, Color Pop and Collage features to put on the finishing touches. Plus, this week, an update to the Twitter App for Windows Phone makes it possible to upload multiple photos and easier to tag your friends. On the game front, engage in the fantasy adventure of otherworldly combat with “Order & Chaos Duels,” based on a popular collectible trading card game. The game is new to the Windows Phone Store. Or, if you just want to chillax, crank up the OnAir Player app for Windows, which lets you access music from all your devices and stream it through your house using your tablet, PC or smartphone as a remote control.

WR_3

This week on the Microsoft Facebook page, we introduced you to two artists in Paris who created a mind-bending art installation with Kinect. Tell us what you’ve created using #ICreatedThis.

WR_4

Speaking of Nadella “firsts,” from Snaps, this week, we present: A Microsoft logo on display at Satya Nadella’s first event as CEO on March 27, 2014 and captured by Brian Smale.

WR_5

Back to your regularly scheduled dog days of summer. Join us here next week for more hot news.

Posted by Aimee Riordan
Microsoft News Center Staff

Satya Nadella to employees: ‘Bold ambition and our core’

clip_image002

In an email to employees Thursday, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella says Microsoft will “reinvent productivity to empower every person and every organization on the planet to do more and achieve more,” and to that end, will find ways to simplify and move faster and more efficiently.

“We think about productivity for people, teams and the business processes of entire organizations as one interconnected digital substrate,” he says in the email. “We also think about the interconnected platforms for individuals, IT and developers.”

Read Nadella’s entire email here.

Suzanne Choney
Microsoft News Center Staff

Satya Nadella to employees: ‘Bold ambition and our core’

In an email to employees Thursday, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella says Microsoft will “reinvent productivity to empower every person and every organization on the planet to do more and achieve more,” and to that end, will find ways to simplify and move faster and more efficiently.

“We think about productivity for people, teams and the business processes of entire organizations as one interconnected digital substrate,” he says in the email. “We also think about the interconnected platforms for individuals, IT and developers.”

Read Nadella’s entire email here.

Suzanne Choney
Microsoft News Center Staff

Microsoft delivers updates, innovations and expansions to meet cloud demand

The following post is from Phil Sorgen, Corporate Vice President, Worldwide Partner Channel, Microsoft.


Building on some of the incredible innovation already delivered by our engineering groups this year, I’m thrilled to announce some of the new technologies and services that we will highlight at the 2014 Worldwide Partner Conference and over the next few months, including:

Cloud-first storage and machine learning solutions

· Microsoft Azure StorSimple is a hybrid cloud storage solution that dramatically cuts the cost and inefficiency out of managing a company’s ever-growing volume of data. Available Aug. 1, the new offering gives system integration partners great opportunity to help their customers deploy the solution for all types of storage. Azure StorSimple simplifies disaster recovery, consolidates management and brings on-premises data to the cloud for development and testing of new apps. As customers begin the move to cloud, storage is often the place they start, because the agility and cost benefits are so clear. Find out more in Takeshi Numoto’s blog post here.

· The Azure Machine Learning service we announced in June will be available for preview on Monday. This is groundbreaking technology that partners can use to build advanced analytic cloud services for their customers in minutes and hours, eliminating much of the heavy lifting associated with deploying machine learning in modern data-driven applications. Partners like MAX451, OSIsoft, Neal Analytics and Versium are already providing solutions with this service to their customers, including Pier 1 Imports, Carnegie Mellon University, Treehouse and Millionair Club Charity

New and expanded cloud services

· More than 8,000 customers and partners sign up for Azure every week, and we continue to deliver cloud-first innovation to each and every one of them with new services and capabilities they can use to bring their next solution to life. In April, we introduced the Azure Preview Portal, an all-new cloud experience that radically simplifies cloud development by bringing together cross-platform cloud technologies, services and tools into a single environment. On Monday, we’ll bring new IaaS functionality to the Portal, to allow users to easily manage virtual machines, as well as single-click SharePoint deployment for the management of multiple virtual machines within the Portal. We’re also previewing Azure Event Hubs, a new service that can broker millions of events per second, allowing partners and customers to pull in, process and analyze data from a nearly infinite number of cloud-connected smart devices.

· To meet the growing demand for cloud services, we’re also continuing to invest in increased network and datacenter capacity for U.S. partners and customers. Next week, we’ll bring two new Azure regions online in Virginia and Iowa. Customers will now be able to access Azure through private connections being added at six new Equinix datacenters. See the Azure blog for more information on all of this.

· In addition to our increased network and datacenter capacity, we are also expanding our preview of the Microsoft’s Azure government cloud and announcing our intent to broaden our government cloud portfolio with a new Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online U.S. government cloud offering. To read more about how Azure, Dynamics and Office 365 work together to provide the most comprehensive, end-to-end cloud solution for government partners and customers, read Curt Kolcun’s blog here.

Innovations in Productivity

· Announced earlier this year as Codename Oslo, today we’re sharing that the official name is Delve. Delve, the first experience powered by the intelligence fabric we call the Office Graph, will be available to Office 365 customers later this year. It’s an incredible new way to search and discover content across Office 365 that delivers personalized insights based on machine learning. Delve surfaces information that would be of interest and relevance to you, enabling you to discover and connect with new information you might otherwise not have. Delve effectively removes the information silos that exist across applications, while better supporting information discovery to enable teams to work together as a network.

· Our new Office 365 SMB plan lineup, announced Wednesday and launching this fall, is the result of feedback we’ve received from customers and partners about how SMB customers want to get started and grow with Office 365. The new plans will greatly simplify the sales process for our partners, shorten sales cycles and improve upsell opportunities. Take a look at the Office blog for more details.

With WPC being only a few days away, I’m looking forward to meeting many of our partners and showcasing how Microsoft helps enable partners’ success in a mobile-first, cloud-first world. As you can see from the announcements above, cloud will continue to be a large part of WPC this year.

The shift to cloud computing is a vast opportunity for our partners, and we’re focused on giving our channel the most comprehensive set of cloud technologies – spanning infrastructure, data, mobility, productivity and managed services – and the best programs and services to help them grow their businesses by building, hosting, managing or selling hybrid or cloud solutions. I encourage all of our partners to learn more about these technologies and how they can help deliver value to our shared customers and propel their business forward.

Thank you for continuing on the cloud journey with us. For those of you joining us in person, I can’t wait to see you next week in Washington D.C.!