Microsoft aims for telcos with next wave of Azure

Mobile World Congress, Barcelona – Microsoft is targeting operators with Azure for Operators in order to take advantage of the massive transformation underway as telcos look to shift their operations to the cloud.

According to the Microsoft, McKinsey estimates that by 2030, the market will be worth more than a trillion dollars across the Fortune 500.

Virtualizing network functions was the first step that many telcos took on the journey toward moving operations to the cloud, according to Yousef Khalidi, CVP, Azure for Operators, at Microsoft.

Azure for Operators is a hybrid, carrier grade cloud platform designed around the specific needs of the operator in running network functions such as packet core, virtualized radio access networks, subscriber data management and billing policy. According to a blog from Khalidi, it's "first-party Microsoft product that builds on the features of its predecessor, adding essential features of key Microsoft technologies such as Mariner Linux, Hybrid AKS, Arc, while continuing to leverage Microsoft Services for security, lifecycle management, observability, DevOps and automation."

Microsoft Azure for telcos

AT&T is already using Azure Operator Nexus, Khalidi told Silverlinings. "It wasn't just technology and people, we took responsibility for building the existing systems and future systems," he said. "The results have been incredibly positive.

Now, Microsoft is "selectively working with other operators for potential deployments around the world. In this blog post, we share more details about how we are deploying the platform in practice and discuss the expected benefits for our customers," he said.

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