A big challenge for all enterprises will be to ensure IT frameworks successfully adapt to changes taking place due to remote working, and the new kind of data flows taking place. Microsoft said its cloud services had seen a massive spike in usage since social distancing and COVID-19 guidelines were put in place by various countries.
The company reported a spike of 775% increase of its cloud services in geographies that have implemented social distancing mandates. These include Europe North, Europe West, UK South, France Central, Asia East, India South, Brazil South, etc.
Microsoft To Add More Capacity To Handle The Pressure
There has been a meteoric rise in the use of Microsoft Teams, Power BI and Windows Virtual Desktop as people shift to working from homes or remote areas. If you look at the usage of Teams alone, Microsoft reported more than 44 million daily users who generated over 900 million meetings and calling minutes on Teams in just one week.
With such a high number of users, Microsoft has made sure it keeps the services running and that there is no outage, especially when it comes to certain preferential services, including in healthcare. At the same time, the company is planning to add more capacity in preparation to keep everything running smoothly for its cloud services.
“To handle surges in demand, we will facilitate the creation of new capacity in the relevant regions,” said Microsoft.
Impact Of Work From Home On Cloud Vendors
The reliance on essential web services is so widespread that if there was an outage on any of the cloud platforms, it could make the COVID-19 situation much worse. Given that remote work may be the norm in the coming months and weeks, getting the virtual cloud services running smoothly is of utmost importance for the entire global economy. And large cloud vendors like Microsoft, Amazon and Google play a critical role in these crucial times.
The focus will be mainly on enterprise continuity to enable remote work from anywhere. But that would put pressure on traditional data centers and private clouds. This can enhance cloud-native apps and the SaaS market further.
Many companies are under pressure and businesses in several verticals may experience several outage events. This is especially true for those handling a significant jump in workload. Some of the business segments undergoing some level of stress would involve web learning platforms, collaboration applications, and leisure/entertainment services.
What Cloud Vendors Need To Do
Given such a spike in usage of cloud-based services, experts say there need to be some temporary restrictions from cloud vendors designed to balance the best possible experience for all users. This demand has been put forth by politicians as well.
Perhaps cloud vendors will put limits on free offers to prioritize capacity for existing paid customers. Microsoft has set ‘soft’ quota limits, and customers can raise support requests to increase these limits.
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Vishal Chawla is a senior tech journalist at Analytics India Magazine and writes about AI, data analytics, cybersecurity, cloud computing, and blockchain. Vishal also hosts AIM's video podcast called Simulated Reality- featuring tech leaders, AI experts, and innovative startups of India.