Although this is just Microsoft playing catch up, the company’s formal announcement of the Azure Stack has the potential to change the cloud market forever, and having a significant impact on AWS.
Essentially, businesses seeking a transition to the cloud now have a new model to consider.
One where they get the power to build on-premise applications that can consume the valuable services that public clouds like AWS and Azure offer via API, not to mention the wonderful array of tools that are available over there.
Azure Stack offers companies the power to bring cloud services into their own backyard.
As the official announcement states, this hybrid computing solution is now available for order from three Microsoft server partners, namely Dell EMC, Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Lenovo.
The keyword here being ready to order — not yet ready to run. And that’s because systems will not ship until this coming September, which is when the Redmond based software giant is expected to make the final code available to its partners.
That said, the big deal here is that Azure Stack provides companies all the benefits of the cloud, without them actually migrating to the cloud. This makes this new service a good fit for companies that are in regulated industries, or enterprises that simply prefer to use their own datacentre infrastructure.
Amazon Web Services, with its cloud-first-and-only ideology is sure to feel a little heat.
This new arrival may not be able to stop the AWS juggernaut, but it can slow its momentum a little, particularly as Microsoft enjoys more partners across the globe — organizations that some say are beyond the AWS footprint.
Users like these are ripe for the picking, as far as Microsoft is concerned.
Of course, Redmond is not alone in offering a service like this, both AWS and Google already offer something similar to what Azure Stack brings to the table. This is just the second biggest cloud company keeping pace with two of its competitors.
But as Gartner noted in its most recent Magic Quadrant report, many companies are pursuing a multi-cloud strategy, and are using Azure for some of their workloads. The on-premises Azure Stack software is in a great position to attract customers that seek hybrid solutions.
This formal launch of Azure Stack could well prove to be a turning point.