Microsoft announced plans to open new data centers in Europe and the Middle East. These announcements are the latest in a series of data center projects undertaken to expand on Azure’s global reach in recent months. Two new data centers have also come online within the past few days in Central and South France.
New European and Middle East Data Centers Announced
Microsoft has announced the expansion of its cloud services in Europe and the Middle East with plans to open its first data centers in Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates.
Microsoft cited growing demand throughout Europe and the Middle East as catalysts for its expansion in the regions. Microsoft said it has been working with financial institutions located in Switzerland, as well as other organizations in the local market, and decided to open new cloud regions in Geneva and Zurich.
The Middle East, which is a quickly-growing market for cloud adoption, has also been identified as an area of opportunity for new regions as it hopes to capture new business in the area. The new data centers are expected to be launched in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.
French Datacenters Go Online
Originally announced towards the end of 2017, Microsoft has brought two data centers in France online this week. These data centers are located in Paris and Marseille, and offer general availability of both Azure and Office 365 to the area. Dynamics 365 is set to follow in early 2019, according to Microsoft.
These new regions will likely impact Microsoft Azure’s score on the Liftr Index. We’re tracking this new data on the Liftr Index and you’ll see an increase in the upcoming days on Microsoft Azure’s availability score on Index. As of the time of this article’s writing, Microsoft has an overall Index score of 17.254.
Microsoft Azure’s offerings in Germany have long been separated from the rest of Microsoft’s cloud offerings. This is due in part to Germany’s unique regulatory rules, creating an environment where customer data access is controlled by trustee T-Systems, as opposed to Microsoft itself.
With these compliance concerns in mind, Microsoft Germany has released its IT-Grundschutz Compliance Workbook to assist organizations in achieving their IT-Grundschutz certification.
In addition, Microsoft has planned two new data centers in Germany, complete with support for Microsoft Azure, Office 365 and Dynamics 365. This is in addition to services already available in existing German regions.
“Many customers with particularly sensitive needs, for example in the public sector, prefer our German cloud offering. We give customers the choice” said a Microsoft spokesperson.
These new projects will add to Azure’s growing international offerings. We intend to keep tracking these initiatives and how they will impact Microsoft’s standing on the Liftr Index as they continue.