Canada Gets New Azure Cloud, Data & AI Capabilities

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O Canada! Microsoft has brought a bunch of new capabilities for Azure users in the country, centered around cloud, data and artificial intelligence.

User of the company’s cloud platform now have access to 3 new Azure services in the Canadian datacenters. These are M-Series Virtual Machines, NC-V3 Series (GPU series) Virtual Machines, along with SQL Managed Instances.

The technology giant made things official in an announcement post.

With Khalil Alfar, general manager of Azure Cloud and enterprises business division for Microsoft Canada noting that Canadian businesses are starting to truly recognize the value and business impact that comes along with adopting AI and cloud capabilities.

Speaking of the M-Series virtual machines, Microsoft makes it a point to highlight that they offer the highest vCPU count (from 8 to 128 hyper-threaded vCPUs) and largest memory (from 192 GB up to 4 TB) of any VM in the cloud.

They are all powered by Intel Xeon 2.5 GHz E7-8890 v3 processors, and are ideal for running SAP workloads.

“With the capabilities and infrastructure to handle large in-memory workloads involving big datasets, companies are already maximizing its high-performance potential by moving SAP HANA applications to the cloud, since M-series VMs are SAP certified for all SAP workloads. The move provides cost efficiencies, reduces commercial and technical risks, offers economies of scale, and allows customers greater access to their data.”

In terms of artificial intelligence, Canadian enterprises now also have access to advanced AI capabilities on the Azure platform. Global AI spending is expected to reach $47 billion by 2020 thanks to cloud computing, and moves like these play their part.

Microsoft further revealed that organizations that are still running SQL 2008/R2 can extend the life of their legacy databases after the end of support date of July 9, 2019 by moving it to Azure SQL MI.

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