Microsoft confirms Windows Azure name change to Microsoft Azure April 3rd

The rumors hit the Internet earlier this week and now it's official: Microsoft has confirmed it will change the name of its cloud server service from Windows Azure to Microsoft Azure, and that rebranding will go into effect on April 3rd.

In a blog post, Microsoft said the branding change "reflects Microsoft’s strategy and focus on Azure as the public cloud platform for customers as well as for our own services." The blog added:

Our commitment to deliver an enterprise-grade cloud platform for the world’s applications is greater than ever. Today we support one of the broadest set of operating systems, languages, and services of any public cloud—from Windows, SQL and .NET to Python, Ruby, Node.js, Java, Hadoop, Linux, and Oracle. In today’s mobile-first, cloud-first, data-powered world, customers want a public cloud platform that supports their needs—whatever they may be—and that public cloud is Microsoft Azure.

Windows Azure was first announced in 2008 and launched in 2010. It has since expanded to become a division that generates over $1 billion a year for Microsoft. It added Linux support in 2012 and Hardoop-based features via Windows Azure HDInsight in 2013. Earlier this year NBC used it as the basis for streaming video from the 2014 Winter Olympics.

This is the second big branding change for the company this year. The SkyDrive data storage service was renamed to OneDrive in February, which ironically is slowly being updated to use Microsoft Azure.

Source: Microsoft | Image via Microsoft

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19 Comments

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I think the Windows brand has reached its peak of usefulness. To many people Windows means something negative and of course Windows 8 and Windows Phone is not helping.

Its funny when I think back about how Ballmer and Gates imagined a future with 'Windows' everywhere.

derekaw said,
I think the Windows brand has reached its peak of usefulness.
Makes me glad they don't have people like you on their marketing team.

Romero said,
Makes me glad they don't have people like you on their marketing team.

OK, well, I am no marketer so we are both glad, but I have watched the Windows brand deteriorate and become less relevent over the years.

Huh, must be the people around you giving you that impression, or the blogs you read. I don't find that to be the case in the least.

[quote=Romero said, Huh, must be the people around you giving you that impression, or the blogs you read. I don't find that to be the case in the least.[/quote]

OK, that makes perfect sense that we could have different opinions. Thanks.

Aergan said,
Makes sense but they really should have made this change a lot earlier.

Earlier on calling it Windows Azure made more sense than it does today, at the start, and up till I'd say a year ago, it only ran Windows Server instances and so on. Now they'll run Linux VMs and other non-MS software on Azure if you want. In other words it went from a Windows only cloud option to one that supports more than just Windows, thus the name change timing makes sense.

"The parent company of BSkyB, News Corporation, filed a lawsuit against Microsoft in 2011, stating it held the trademark on the "Sky" name. Microsoft claimed that consumers would not be confused by its SkyDrive data storage service, but the judge in the case ruled in June that the brand name would in fact be detrimental to the previous Sky trademark."

NerdyTech said,
I didn't mind SkyDrive. Why the change?

A company named BSkyB claimed they have the trademark for the word "sky" and forced the change.

Shadowzz said,
And another name change! Cheers Microsoft.
At least they don't kill their services if they want to use another name, he Google?