Azure is perfectly placed to run all of your business applications. It delivers global scale, consistency and seamless integration. That’s why it’s the public cloud that so many businesses use to run their operations. Of course, making the move to Azure can seem like a daunting prospect, especially if you don’t have the in-house expertise or are new to cloud computing. Fortunately, Azure developers and consultants can help you to transition to the cloud with Azure, build innovative applications and empower your business to achieve more.
What is Microsoft Azure for Business?
Microsoft Azure for Business is the name for a growing collection of integrated cloud services available to businesses, developers, individuals and frankly anyone who wants to build an app or own a business without getting bogged down with hardware management. Azure covers everything from analytics to computing, storage and mobile. What these all have in common is that they allow you to move faster, achieve more and save money. Developers can use integrated tools, pre-built templates and managed services to build enterprise, mobile and web apps faster than ever. And all of this using tried and tested technologies that they know and love.
Services that Developers Love
There are no end of services available to Developers in Azure and, as we’ve mentioned ,these are growing almost daily. However, when it comes to the services that are used by developers to help empower your business,the most popular among them include:
- Databases – Azure is built for storing data, whether structured or unstructured. Azure storage services include Azure Blobs, Azure Files, Azure Queues and Azure Tables. Meanwhile, for migrating databases built on SQL Servers, a fully managed service, Azure SQL database, offers the perfect solution. Finally, Azure Cosmos DB, is Microsoft’s multi-model database service backed up by comprehensive service level agreements.
- Development tools – whether developing for desktop or mobile, developers have access to a full set of tools for app development. These include the Visual Studio environment and a broad selection of third-party tools for sharing code, managing workflows, deploying software and monitoring performance.
- Containers – Azure makes it easy to deploy and scale containers, encapsulated environments that run applications securely and can be quickly scaled. The Azure Kubernetes Service is the standard for managing containerised workloads.
- Machine learning tools – Azure includes tools for performing predictive analytics and identifying algorithms. The Azure Machine learning service enables developers to build, train and deploy machine learning in the cloud using the same frameworks and tools as they would on-premises.
What Can You Create With Azure?
Now that you understand what Azure is, you’ll no doubt want to know how you can put it to work for your business. Azure is essentially a cloud computing platform that delivers solutions, including Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS), that can be used for a whole range of services and can supplement or replace on-premises servers. What’s more, app and website developers can use Azure storage and services as building blocks for innovative solutions without having to worry about the security or reliability of underlying infrastructure. With Azure developers on your side, you can create a huge range of solutions, including:
- Mobile and Web Apps – Azure provides the platform for hosting, developing and managing adaptive, scalable and integrated web and mobile apps.
- IoT Solution – with Azure, your business has the scalability, flexibility and security to innovate and create new solutions that can integrate with existing infrastructure and collect invaluable data.
- Machine Learning Models – developers can better reproduce, audit and automate model creation and training.
Business Benefits of Microsoft Azure
Whatever you’re using Azure for, it offers some incredible business benefits. Whether you’re looking to build a mobile app, migrate legacy infrastructure or move virtual machines to the cloud, Azure is:
- Flexible – you can move compute resources up and down, and move virtual machines between on-premises and the cloud, as needed according to business needs or market trends.
- Open – Azure supports almost any operating system (OS) language, tool or framework, which gives your developers the ability to perform at their best.
- Reliable – Microsoft understands enterprise technology, which is why Azure has a service level agreement of 99.95% availability and round-the-clock tech support. It’s no wonder that it receives such high satisfaction scores.
- Economical – With Azure, you only pay for what you use. What’s more, by moving legacy infrastructure, you can realise a significant return on investment.
- Trusted – with Azure, you can move to the cloud with confidence, as it’s built on the same technologies that you probably already use, such as Windows Server, SQL Server and Active Directory.
- Secure – you can protect critical applications with managed cloud backups and disaster recovery built-in. Azure security services are backed by thousands of cybersecurity experts and the industry’s largest compliance portfolio for cloud workloads. Advanced threat protection with Azure Security Centre and identity management with Azure Active Directory.
- Continuous – Azure backup and disaster recovery are vital for business continuity; with Azure, you can implement and enhance advanced site recovery and built-in integration with your business systems.
- Powerful – Azure has unmatched compute and storage performance, which makes it the perfect place to run demanding or data-intensive workloads.
- Insightful – with advanced analytics using data services such as artificial intelligence (AI) you can extract and visualise real-time predictive insight for improved business outcomes.
How Developers Put the Power in Your Hands
There is so much that can be done with Azure. However, once your developers have worked their magic, it is also easy for you to manage those services, tools and applications. Microsoft Azure Portal is Azure’s primary interface for managing your subscriptions and resources. There is a customisable dashboard that gives you a quick glance at everything that you have running as well as an easy-to-use interface for adding new Azure resources in an instant.
By creating custom dashboards, your developers can help you to monitor the performance of your Azure-based applications and infrastructure and set up alerts to receive notifications based on pre-defined triggers. You can also easily see if your cloud-based resources are meeting best practices in the Azure Security Centre and review recommendations to further strengthen your defences. With the power to oversee everything you’re doing in the cloud, you are truly in control and have everything you need to support your thriving business.