Microsoft is extending Azure IoT to the edge of the network

Nichole Vega
May 13, 2017

Meanwhile, serverless computing supplements DevOps because it frees up developers and IT operations staff from having to set up and tune systems.

Microsoft has launched an Azure app for Android after a long time since Azure's web launch.

On the other side of the equation, Microsoft has enhanced its support for popular database software like MySQL and PostgreSQL, so the Azure cloud is better suited for their databases when they get there.

Microsoft's chief executive yesterday touted a new number for Windows 10, saying the operating system now powers 500 million devices - half way toward a goal the company once gave itself but since discarded. It offers an authenticated, browser-based shell experience hosted in Azure and is accessible from anywhere.

Partners said they're happy that Azure IoT Edge fleshes out Microsoft's platform as a whole so that solution providers in the manufacturing market can also use the platform's Azure Machine Learning, artificial intelligence features, Azure IoT Hub, and Stream Analytics services. Microsoft previewed Docker, Azure Functions and Xamarin.IoT support. The second is tied to the first, and in fact at the show Microsoft announced a preview of Azure IoT Edge, which actually brings some cloud computing capabilities like to edge devices; that is, internet endpoints rather than servers.

It is hard to say about that yet, although Microsoft does have a good track record recently of improving on apps. You can connect Cosmos DB to Azure's HDInsight service, for processing large datasets. In short, you can launch an application or service almost instantly with global support with extremely low latency in almost any region of the world.

For example, Fortune discussed the moves in an article titled "Microsoft Doubles Down on Cloud Databases to Fend Off Amazon and Google". Custom Decision Service also uses AI to build decision-making into apps. Customers are most willing to consider new technology vendors when they shift from running their own computing to renting cloud services, he said.

Additionally, at Build 2017, Microsoft announced a variety of technologies to help with that transition, including updates to its artificial intelligence (AI) offerings and database technology. Customers who've already built on top of Cosmos DB would be able to dive in and start swimming sooner, too. The company claims that this is the first globally distributed, multi-model database service that provides horizontal scale with guaranteed uptime, throughput, and millisecond latency to the 99 percentile that is also backed by SLAs.

First out of the gate is the Azure IoT Edge, a cloud service created to bring and run analytics and artificial intelligence capabilities directly on an Internet of Things (IoT) device. And over at InfoWorld, an article titled "Why Microsoft's Cosmos DB represents the future of cloud databases" compared Azure Cosmos DB with AWS offerings, saying: "Amazon has multiple offerings, but each provides only part of the picture: managed conventional databases (Amazon RDS), NoSQL (Amazon DynamoDB), and a data warehouse (Amazon Redshift)".

Microsoft on Wednesday, May 10, U.S. time, unveiled new tools meant to democratize artificial intelligence by enabling machine smarts to be built into software from smartphone games to factory floors.

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