GE, Microsoft partner to bring Predix to Azure

Microsoft has been investing in its Azure platform, as competition in the market for on-demand computing power continues to heat up.

Bringing Predix to Azure will help businesses build, securely deploy and operate industrial applications in the cloud with additional capabilities, such as natural language technology, artificial intelligence, advanced data visualization and enterprise application integration, GE says.

One of the first steps in the collaboration will make GE's Predix platform for the Industrial Internet available on the Azure cloud. Referred to as Predix on Azure, the project will usher in a new era of flexible and cohesive solutions to two very distinct areas in the business sector.

A preview system will be made available to developers later this year with a commercial debut set for 2017.

The companies aim to integrate Predix with Azure IoT Suite and Cortana Intelligence Suite along with Microsoft business apps in a bid to connect industrial data with business processes and analytics.

Azure Stack is a stack of technologies Microsoft is designing for customers and partners to run in their own datacenters.

The alliance is a bet on the "industrial Internet of Things", where companies gain actionable insights into their operations from their machines connected through the internet cloud.

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- Unified Data Protection Management - Provides simplified ability for Microsoft CSPs to scale their business with the Acronis multi- tenant, multi-tier service provider solution.

Assessment: The analysis of that data for cloud readiness including Azure PaaS adoption and gaps in on-premise networks.

Commenter Conrad Kimball, replied, "Will or will not Microsoft support Azure Stack in a build-it-myself mode?" Predix is GE's Internet of Things (IoT) platform and is already available on the Amazon and Oracle clouds.

Kunte expects that Microsoft software, such as business intelligence tools, will be built on top of Predix. There is a slight benefit in that not all cloud services have the geographic reach Microsoft has - the company's Azure servers have 20 geographical locations.

Shares of GE (GE) hit a 52-week high of $32.50 before closing Monday at $32.21, up 0.03% for the day. "The users I deal with daily won't like the idea of being forced into getting it [Azure Stack] from just three vendors".

The announcement joins a number of other Microsoft partnerships in the cloud software space. He said feedback from customers underscores the importance of speed and stability in succeeding with the technology.

  • Michael Mitchell