Data centre operators Equinix and TelecityGroup are both now offering Microsoft Azure ExpressRoute for Office 365 as part of their cloud offerings. Microsoft is understood to be announcing as many as five such partnerships with data centre operators.
Co-location specialist TelecityGroup said it is offering the cloud service to three distinct types of customer, these being enterprise customers, co-location partners and a reseller channel. The reseller channel itself is broken down three groups of telcos, managed service providers and systems integrators.
The nature of the market for Office 365 is broadening, according to Adi Ayyagani, the group head of market development for TelecityGroup. “Once interest was restricted to financial services and a couple of other early adopters, but now enterprises from every vertical market are showing an interest.”
TelecityGroup is offering the Office365 service on its software defined networking Cloud-IX platform. Though a number of operators are reportedly making ExpressRoute for Office 365 available, Ayyagani claimed that the Level 3 MPLS network that underpins Cloud-IX will make all the difference. “It means customers can get the service from anywhere, it’s more robust and there’s a greater level of integration available, so that configuration of the service is a lot simpler for service providers,” said Ayyagani.
The managed service providers, telcos and systems integrators reselling the cloud service will be able to use TelecityGroup’s broad footprint to access almost any market in Europe, the Middle East or African, said Ayyagani.
Meanwhile, global data centre operator Equinix has now announced worldwide availability of the cloud version of Microsoft Office for enterprises. The service improves the levels of data privacy since ExpressRoute enables most Office 365 network traffic to avoid the public Internet. Enterprises that use ExpressRoute in an Equinix data centre also get the benefit of being able to run hybrid and multi-cloud services that didn’t previously scale well over the Internet or over typical WAN works, it says.
“Office 365 customers can now benefit from predictable network performance and the ability to better manage network availability,” said Ross Ortega, Microsoft’s Principal Program Manager for Azure Networking.