Microsoft overhauls its server technology using ARM processors

By: Costea Lestoc
2 minute read

It looks like there is a battle heating up in the world of ARM technology. After a long lasting run in which Intel was uncontested when it came to the data center processor business, Microsoft is finally ready to bring the heat and give the Kaby Lake manufacturer a run for its money.

Microsoft is ready for ARM

The news comes in the form of a promise from Microsoft which says that it will be using ARM chips for its cloud service. ARM processor-based servers will also benefit from a special version of Windows. This version of Windows has been developed in collaboration with Qualcomm.

Currently, the new ARM chips are being tested to see how they handle the various tasks that occur in this environment. Big data or machine learning make this list, but there are also basic functionalities that Microsoft is looking to make sure can be handled such as searching or storing.

It might not be available from the very start

It would seem that customers have been left out of the loop as to how and when these new chips will become available. There are also talks about not releasing the new and improved solution to the public and only using it locally for increased performance. Interesting enough, Microsoft’s new processors would increase the relevance and variety of vendors.

It makes sense

Microsoft official and Azure cloud division VP Jason Zander pretty much stated that the company wouldn’t make a fuss about something they didn’t intend on making a big part of Microsoft’s ecosystem.  He also went on to say that providing the chip solution and making it accessible to others users is “logical” as the next move. There are multiple hardware reasons why Microsoft would want to switch over, but the most important is cost reduction.

Microsoft managed to push its cloud service all the way to second place, surpassed only by Amazon’s offering. The ARM initiative is just one of many collaborations said to be scheduled by Microsoft and Qualcomm, as the two companies shook hands over deals across platforms and types of technology for the near future.

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