Microsoft Ignite Announcements 2021

Microsoft-Ignite-Announcements-2021 Microsoft Ignite Announcements 2021

 

Microsoft Ignite hosted their second virtual conference in 2021, and had so many exciting speakers and announcements, that we thought we should dedicate an article to some Microsoft Ignite announcements. Microsoft Ignite was started in 1993 and is an annual conference of developers and IT professionals. They gather to discuss new developments in cybersecurity, AI, and Azure innovation, as well as listen to brilliant keynote speakers. Microsoft Ignite 2021 took place from March 2-4 and we want to tell you some of the most exciting projects that were shared during the event. 

Microsoft Teams Update

Microsoft Teams has undergone a plethora of updates, many of which are new video call features to increase ease of meetings and functionality. “Dynamic mode” is one of those new features. It automatically adjusts to the meeting experience based on the users and content, allowing for easy transitions based on the meeting itself. “Powerpoint Live” is another one to try out! The presenter can see what the others are viewing without switching screens. This allows for virtually seamless presentations without worrying whether the right presentations are being shared or the slide is correct. Along with Powerpoint Live, Microsoft Teams now has “Presenter Mode”, which has created more options for presenters to have polished and interactive presentations. Finally, Microsoft Teams addressed a cybersecurity concern by creating “invite only meeting controls”, making sure that only the relevant people are allowed into a call. 

Microsoft Power Platforms Update

Some of the other exciting Microsoft Ignite announcements have to do with Microsoft Power Platforms. The popular low-code, development platform for experienced coders and business users alike has taken companies by storm. Some of the features that experienced upgrades in 2021 are Power Apps, Power Automate, and Power Virtual Agent. Power Apps, Microsoft’s low-code program that allows everyone to build and share apps, now has offline mobile capabilities, geospatial capabilities like maps, and more. Power Automate, Microsoft’s automation platform that allows for greater productivity and secure automation, has made shared desktop flows available across organizations. And finally, Power Virtual Agent, that allows users to create their own chatbots with ease, now includes data loss prevention options as well as new topic trigger management for the chatbots. For more information on Power Platforms Updates, click here.

Azure Arc Updates

For those who haven’t heard of Azure Arc, it’s a set of technologies that innovates Azure management and services to any platform. They have also undergone extensive updates this year. Firstly, they have made it possible to run machine learning everywhere. Microsoft shares, “By using Azure Arc to extend machine learning (ML) capabilities to hybrid and multicloud environments, customers can train ML models directly where the data lives using their existing infrastructure investments. This reduces data movement while meeting security and compliance requirements.” Next, they expanded on their program by allowing users to build cloud native applications at scale, anywhere. Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes is now generally available. To learn more, read the full article from Microsoft. And finally, in collaboration with Azure Stack HCI and Azure Arc, users are able to modernize their data centres with ease. It’s a cost-efficient hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) solution, all managed through Azure. To learn more about Azure Stack HCI, click here.

Data and AI Announcements

Another exciting Microsoft Ignite announcement has to do with Azure Percept, Microsoft’s platform that simplifies the usage of Azure AI technologies on the edge. This includes Azure Cloud offerings such as AI model development, analytics, and more. The platform even includes a development kit, which comes with an intelligent camera: Azure Percept Vision. Want to learn more about this exciting product and how Microsoft is increasing accessibility? Read the full article from them here.

Additional Resources

We’ve touched on some of the updates and announcements that happened at the Microsoft Ignite Conference 2021, but we’ll share just a few more highlights in case you would like to check out additional resources. 

Microsoft Virtual Training Days

If you’re interested in gaining more hard skills, taught by an experienced instructor in your language, check out Microsoft Virtual Training Days here

Keynote Presentation by Satya Nadella

At the conference this year, Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, gave a keynote speech on Microsoft’s vision for the future of Mixed Reality. You can watch the full presentation here to learn more. 

Learn about Cybersecurity

And finally, learn more about cybersecurity, compliance, identity and management in this video from the conference. 

 

We hope that you learned something from these Microsoft Ignite announcements, and feel free to reach out to us at info@optimusifo.com with any further questions.

 

Microsoft Tools to Grow Your SaaS Business

MS-SaaS-Business Microsoft Tools to Grow Your SaaS Business

Microsoft provides specific tools and programs that help SaaS businesses elevate their products, reach their customers, and develop their solutions into a profitable business. Below are the top 5 Microsoft tools to grow your SaaS business. 

 

Azure Cloud

Adopting the cloud comes with incredible advantages. SaaS businesses, in particular, can use the cloud to scale quickly and increase availability without investing in expensive hardware. In addition, since Azure cloud’s security is pre-baked, you have even less overhead to worry about. And, finally, if you have an existing Windows Server and SQL Server license with Software Assurance, then you can pay a reduced rate when you move to Azure.

Get started with 12 months of free service

 

Solution Workplace

If you are building a new solution, it’s tough to know what your precise needs will be. Yet, Microsoft’s Solution Workplace will guide you through this new territory and help you build your solution, take it to market, and grow your sales. After answering a few questions about your needs, the Solution Workplace provides personalized checklists and resources. Now, you have step-by-step guidance through the tasks you need to complete along the lifecycle of your new solution.

You can even collaborate in the Solution Workplace with your entire team. For example, members of your marketing or engineering team can work simultaneously on separate steps but still have visibility about the whole project as you check off completed steps.

View this tutorial for a step-by-step guide on how to use Solution Workspace.

 

Access to Training

Microsoft understands how important it is to build your team’s skills on Microsoft products and to stay up-to-date on the latest tools and technology. That’s why they provide several resources that can help you access training for your team.

Training Center provides role-specific learning paths that help develop your team’s talent and skill on Microsoft products and solutions. There are a variety of learning paths provided, everything from marketer to Architect.

Microsoft Virtual Training Days also provides accelerated remote training, covering a range of technical topics for Microsoft Azure, Microsoft 365 and Microsoft Dynamics 365.

Microsoft Docs has quick starts, tutorials, API reference, and code examples for end users, developers and IT professionals.

 

Commercial Marketplace

One of the major benefits of working with Microsoft is being able to extend your reach to potential customers. When you are a part of the Microsoft Partner Network, you can list your solutions on Microsoft’s Commercial Marketplace, which consists of two online stores: Azure Marketplace and Microsoft AppSource. By publishing your offer on the commercial marketplace, you are able to showcase your product to 4 million active users across 140+ geographies and tap into new audiences and unlock scale.

Partners who list on the commercial marketplace are also eligible for a set of free technical, marketing, and sales benefits to help grow their business.

Here’s an example of an offer listing page in Azure Marketplace:

MS-SaaS Microsoft Tools to Grow Your SaaS Business

Source: Microsoft

 

Access to Marketing Resources

Leverage effective marketing tactics no matter the size or experience of your team. Smart Partner Marketing provides various resources to help you differentiate your solution, provide customizable assets, and access to their digital marketing content on demand platform. 

As a partner, you also have access to Microsoft’s Go-to-Market services to reach more customers. Resources and tools — such as personalized consultation to guidance for marketing assets — are provided as you prepare to introduce your solutions to the right customers. 

Growing your SaaS business can be challenging but leveraging these Microsoft tools can help elevate your product, skill up your team, and extend your reach to potential customers. If you need additional support, Optimus can provide support for cloud migration, cloud management, DevOps, and QA and Testing. Contact us at: info@optimusinfo.com

Just getting started? Download Microsoft’s SaaS Playbook that provides strategies for building your SaaS business, technical details about deploying your solutions, and best practices. They also include a calculator that helps discover your app’s financial potential.

SaaS Playbook and App Potential Calculator