Unsurprisingly, 2021 was large for Microsoft’s cloud companies. And 2022 is anticipated to be even larger, with Microsoft, the No. 2 enterprise public-cloud supplier, on tempo to construct 50 to 100 new datacenters per 12 months.
However what, precisely, is the Microsoft Cloud? It is not a single SKU or service that clients can buy. Neither is it synonymous with Azure. It is far more difficult and more and more intertwined than that.
This previous fall, Microsoft quietly renamed the bucket of companies that its officers have been calling “industrial cloud” to “Microsoft Cloud.” Many on the firm already had been utilizing this time period, however as of the beginning of Microsoft’s fiscal 2022, it is now formally a part of its earnings terminology, as properly. The Microsoft Cloud consists of Microsoft 365/Workplace 365, Azure and the assorted Azure companies, Dynamics 365, a number of LinkedIn industrial companies, cloud-database and analytics companies, Enterprise Mobility + Safety, the assorted “on-line” variations of Change Server, SharePoint Server, and extra.
In October, Microsoft reported that the Microsoft Cloud generated $20.7 billion in revenues for Q1 FY22, which means it’s on a roughly $80 billion annual run-rate tempo. So despite the fact that you possibly can’t purchase — or subscribe to — a “Microsoft Cloud” SKU, Microsoft gross sales and companions are aiming to promote customers as many items of the Microsoft Cloud as potential.
What’s probably coming to the Microsoft Cloud in 2022?
For one, the Microsoft Cloud is poised to get a brand new infusion from Nuance. Microsoft introduced intentions to purchase Nuance again in April 2021 for $19.7 billion. Nuance’s enterprise is at the moment largely healthcare-focused; its speech-recognition know-how helps streamline the doctor-patient interplay course of. Microsoft officers have stated that Nuance’s tech would make a superb match for a lot of vertical industries past healthcare if and when the deal clears antitrust regulation hurdles (anticipated in calendar Q1 2022). Perhaps that new Dynamics Contact Heart bundle would dovetail properly with Nuance, as properly….
Talking of verticals, I am anticipating Microsoft to show up the gross sales pitches for its vertical/trade clouds. These trade clouds are bundles of Microsoft 365/Workplace 365, Azure, Dynamics 365 and varied templates and utility programming interfaces tailored for vertical markets like healthcare, retail, finance, manufacturing, nonprofits and extra.
Microsoft watchers who’ve been at this for some time might bear in mind Microsoft’s previous “Higher Collectively” campaigns, by way of which Microsoft tried to persuade clients that they’d have the most effective computing expertise in the event that they used a Microsoft-centric stack of merchandise that labored “higher collectively.” That is principally what officers are attempting to realize with vertical clouds. Business-specific bundles additionally assist upsell merchandise like Dynamics 365 and Energy Platform that may not be firstly in clients’ minds when signing licensing offers.
On the Azure entrance, Microsoft additionally will probably be working to promote clients on the concept its work in up-and-coming areas like Azure Quantum, Azure for Operators (telco) and Azure Area (for these utilizing satellite tv for pc imagery and companies) — together with its federal cloud work — are all interrelated and mutually useful. A few months in the past, Microsoft reorganized (once more) its Cloud + AI enterprise unit and created a brand new single Strategic Missions and Applied sciences Workforce that’s meant to make use of “learnings” (a favourite Microspeak time period as of late) from every of these companies in constructing digital options within the others.
I am pondering 2022 may also be once we lastly begin seeing Microsoft’s MetaOS technique manifest as new ‘fashionable office’ services. Sources stated a 12 months in the past that Microsoft was working to convey collectively Microsoft Graph, Microsoft Search and Fluid Framework — coupled with constructing blocks which have change into core to its Workplace suites like Whiteboard, Planner, Lists, ToDo — to create a “MetaOS” platform for work and play. (MetaOS has nothing to do with the metaverse, in case you had been questioning, however has all the things to do with Groups, Outlook and the remainder of Workplace.)
AI will undoubtedly be a key and oft-referenced part of Microsoft’s MetaOS plans and platform, as it should even be for Azure. Microsoft more and more has been pushing its tackle “AI at Scale.” At Microsoft, AI at Scale is supposed to supply clients entry to large-scale AI fashions, cognitive companies and supercomputing assets, all within the type of Azure companies.
And Microsoft will little question preserve banging the information platforms and companies drum in 2022 as one other space the place officers assume it will probably develop the Microsoft Cloud. Control Microsoft President James Phillips’ Digital Transformation Platform Group — one other place the place Microsoft will probably be pushing the full-stack integration story, not simply with the aforementioned trade clouds, but in addition throughout Dynamics 365, Energy Platform, Azure AI Platform, Azure Information Platform and Azure IoT Platform.
“Higher collectively” is again, child. And Microsoft will probably be promoting the heck out of the idea with its rising household of Microsoft Cloud companies in 2022 and past.