Microsoft Azure is a powerful and accessible package of cloud services for modern businesses. Azure includes a wide and ever-expanding range of services, including support for software-as-a-service (SaaS), platform-as-a-service (PaaS), and infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) deployment models.
Azure is a flexible and comprehensive solution that makes it possible to build, deploy, and manage applications using both Microsoft and third-party systems. As of the fourth quarter of 2018, Azure represented an estimated 25% of the total cloud market.
Let’s take a look at four key reasons why Azure is the right choice for your business.
1. Comprehensive services and applications
The advantages in size and scope that Microsoft Azure offers means this single end-to-end solution delivers high availability in data centers around the world. While there are other big names out there, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Apple iCloud, Microsoft has access to a wider selection of storage solutions, services, and applications for end users.
There are more than 600 Azure services operating through Microsoft-managed data centers, including virtual machines, SQL databases, website hosting, mobile services, applications, storage solutions, and messaging services, among others. Azure is also popular in non-corporate environments, with Azure Government counting over 6 million users.
2. Flexibility and scaling
Azure is a flexible business solution with a variety of built-in and customizable functions. Organizations can launch websites, create apps, and maintain infrastructure by customizing cloud software and scaling business structures. Multiple deployment models promote flexible business practices across industry sectors, with SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS models all available depending on your needs. Implementation is easy, allowing businesses to move an application from initial test phase through production quickly via a globally distributed network.
Scalability is built into Azure, giving businesses the opportunity to pay only for the services and computing power that they use. This customizable and cost-effective approach is a major draw to businesses worldwide and enables the option to reduce infrastructure burdens and save money by launching applications in the cloud.
3. Privacy, security, and disaster recovery
Cloud solutions demand robust security and compliance at all levels of operation. Microsoft Azure has a strong security focus, including dedicated systems to control data access. Multi-layered protection mechanisms work with the standard five-sided security model of Detect, Assess, Diagnose, Stabilize, and Close. Industry-leading security protocols meet a number of domestic and international compliance standards, including the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program and the E.U. Data Protection Directive.
Advanced security measures cover multi-factor authentication, application passwords, proxy card access readers, hand geometry biometric readers, and access to a global incident response team. With the support of the size and capabilities of Microsoft, companies can mitigate risk from cyberattacks and natural disasters through continuous service delivery guarantees, high-speed service delivery, multiple data centers, and geographically decentralized infrastructure.
4. Virtual machines and accessible storage
Virtual machines (VMs) play an important role in how Azure functions, with businesses able to create Microsoft or Linux VMs using existing templates or custom designs. Rather than hosting applications and critical business services in-house, you can host them in remote and highly secure cloud-based VMs. Azure is also a comprehensive data management solution for managing SQL relational databases and directories remotely with integrated storage. The integration of key business services with data solutions allows for intelligent scalability and a competitive pricing structure that is very hard to beat.
One more reason
There is one more reason Microsoft Azure is a solid choice for many businesses. It’s surprisingly easy to move virtual machines, databases and even applications to Azure. This is significant because, for many companies, a significant barrier to entry is just getting data and applications into the cloud.
Azure eliminates the hassle, allowing for a smooth transition to the cloud. If you’d like more information about using Azure for your business needs, we recommend speaking directly to your managed IT services provider.