Microsoft aims to snare Box, Dropbox and Google customers with new OneDrive deal

Look out Box, Dropbox and Google – Microsoft is offering free OneDrive to customers of its cloud storage rivals in an attempt to poach them.

The move was announced on an official Microsoft blog yesterday. The company will offer free OneDrive for Business to Box, Dropbox and Google customers with a couple of caveats; the organisations must not currently be OneDrive for Business or Office 365 customers, and they must make a minimum 500 user commitment. The offer is valid as of February 6 and runs until June 30 2018.  

Microsoft added that the growth of OneDrive had been ‘amazing’, and that more than 350,000 organisations were now using the product. These include Accenture, aerospace and defence provider Textron, and Rackspace.

The company has added a variety of enhancements to OneDrive over the past months, including secure external file sharing without the need for a Microsoft account, a self-service file recovery solution, and improved on-demand file browsing and managing.

“OneDrive with Office 365 isn’t just a cloud storage solution,” wrote Ron Markezich, Microsoft corporate vice president. “It’s a core ingredient of the modern workplace.”

Elsewhere, a curious article appeared on Microsoft’s UK news centre with the opening line: “Microsoft has launched the UK’s most powerful cloud services.”

A bold statement indeed. The article relates to the launch of M-Series virtual machines in Azure, which are optimised for large in-memory workloads, such as SAP HANA, and can support up to 128 virtual central processing units (vCPU) and up to 3.8 tebibytes of RAM on a single VM. Microsoft claims this is the most offered by any public cloud.

M-Series VMs were made generally available in December, as well as B-Series VMs, which are aimed at lower CPU workloads such as web servers and small databases. The trick of B-Series is that it offers a slight twist on the usual pay as you go models; customers can build up credits for the predominant low CPU utilisation, which can then be used during spikes. If you have an hour or two, a full list of Azure VM sizes and capabilities is available on the company’s documentation page.