Microsoft launches Azure regions in Germany out of preview

Mark Russinovich, chief technology officer for Microsoft Azure, speaks at Microsoft's cloud briefing in San Francisco in October 2014.

Microsoft today is announcing that its regions of data centers in two locations in Germany — Germany Northeast (Magdeburg) and Germany Central (Frankfurt am Main) — are now available for anyone to use for running applications and storing data through Microsoft Azure. The facilities will be able to run Office 365 for customers starting in the first quarter of 2017, and Microsoft Dynamics in the first half of 2017.

Microsoft first announced plans to open these regions in November and began a preview in March. The regions are notable because they have a data strustee, T-Systems, a subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom. As such, the regions comply with Germany’s data handling laws, according to a blog post.

Azure is not the first public cloud to touch down in Deutschland. In 2014 public cloud market leader Amazon Web Services (AWS) opened a Frankfurt data center region.

More geographical locations can mean lower application latency and faster data transfers. And they can enable certain types of organizations to start using cloud when they couldn’t before.

Earlier this month Microsoft said its two United Kingdom data center regions had become generally available. Meanwhile Azure regions are on the way in Korea, as well as two locations in the U.S. for the U.S. Defense Department.

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