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Microsoft to commission 3 data centres in India: Bhaskar Pramanik

PTI 24 Jun 2015, 23:17:08 IST

Mumbai:  Software major Microsoft today said it will commission three "hyper-scale" data centres in India before the end of this year.

"Microsoft has already started a private preview of these data centres with over 100 existing customers on board across different segments such as banking and financial institutions, government, manufacturing and start-ups," Microsoft India chairman Bhaskar Pramanik told PTI here today.

"They will be allowed to test it out over a three-month period. We will formally launch the services by the end of the calendar year," Pramanik added.

Microsoft will be targeting sensitive sectors including government sectors and financial services through these services.

"If the government has to address 1.2 billion citizens then it needs hyper-scale data centres at an affordable cost, with technology and flexibility," Pramanik said.

The tech giant has set up a number of initiatives around e-governance, education, last-mile access, the start-up ecosystems, smart cities and will continue to drive them going forward, he said, adding "having our own data centres will make it more real".

On the much-anticipated Windows10 launch by next month- end, Pramanik said, "If you think about the coming year, for us it is going to be about the cloud, and it is going to be about Windows10."

He said Microsoft India's cloud business is growing at over 105 per cent annually and with the establishment of the local data centres he expects to change the market.

"In a sense, we will be the market maker and get the Indian clients to move more to the cloud at a faster pace," Pramanik said. Besides its enterprise business, Microsoft is also keenly focusing on growing its consumer business here.

"Since we are a mobile-first country, mobile phones, especially smartphones, are going to play an important role," Pramanik said.

Over the past few years, Microsoft India has invested over USD 1.7 billion, he said, adding it is spending over USD 1 billion in operating expenses and capex annually.

On the consumer front, with the acquisition of Nokia and creation of Microsoft Mobile Devices, the Redmond- headquartered tech giant has strengthened its portfolio here, which will enable it "to go after the mobility or mobile applications space".

"We increased our overall market share in the mobile phones segment which is currently under 5 per cent, and we expect the Windows 10 launch to have substantial impact on mobile phone sales," he said.