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June 9, 2011
Fujitsu and Microsoft have issued the joint announcement that August 2011 is the target date for the launch of the Global Cloud Platform service powered by Windows Azure – the culmination of an partnership established in July 2010. Under the deal, the Fujitsu Global Cloud Platform will be able to deploy Azure PaaS clouds and services from its data center in Japan. It’s the first official production release of the Windows Azure platform appliance – and practically the first time Microsoft has let a marquee cloud solution out from under its thumb.
First, a TalkinCloud mea culpa: When I reported on the launch of the Fujitsu Global Cloud Platform IaaS offering in North America back at the end of May, a commenter (rightly) asked for clarification on the mention of Fujitsu’s Azure offering. It appears I misunderstood my contact at Fujitsu: The company was piloting the new Fujitsu-Microsoft Azure offering with 20 Japanese customers, but it wasn’t available when I wrote that.
But now, Fujitsu can offer any enterprise in Japan a domestically hosted cloud with compute and storage resources handled by Azure and built on its Microsoft-friendly FGCP/A5 application and data framework, according to the press release. And Fujitsu is also offering customers managed and value-add services around deployment, application migration and overall administration.
Prices will start at 5 yen per hour for an Azure “Extra Small”-equivalent instance, and Fujitsu is hoping to recruit 400 enterprise companies, 5,000 SMEs and ISVs in a five-year period after the service launches. For many, many more details, especially around the technical aspects, I suggest you take a look at that press release.
To me, this announcement is just further proof of two things: First, the Japanese cloud market isn’t going to show shrinkage anytime soon. And second, Microsoft’s willingness to play ball with Fujitsu shows that its commitment to growing its cloud vision overcomes even its notorious sense of pride.
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