BT announced it is further broadening its Cloud of Clouds offering by providing customers the ability to connect directly to the Microsoft Office 365 productivity suite with Microsoft Azure ExpressRoute.
The offer builds on BT’s vision of the Cloud of Clouds by enabling its corporate customers to establish a privacy-enhanced, managed connection to consume Microsoft’s cloud-based Office 365 capabilities with the highly predictable performance and the reliability that comes with dedicated connectivity.
BT will offer Azure ExpressRoute for Office 365 at global locations in Europe, the USA and Asia, where the service is available. BT is also among the first global network providers to offer this service in Europe through connectivity in Amsterdam and London. This capability leverages BT Cloud Connect, BT’s high performance connectivity to cloud services.
Keith Langridge, vice president, BT Connect portfolio, said: “Our vision of Cloud of Clouds is all about giving customers more choice, more security and a better user experience as they orchestrate their increasingly diverse cloud environments. Our global network infrastructure helps them bring it all together by connecting them directly with enhanced security to a whole ecosystem of cloud providers. Our customers are looking forward to accessing Office 365 in the cloud as if it was hosted in their own data centers. Being among the first providers able to deliver this connectivity is an important milestone in our journey to be one of the world’s leading cloud services integrators.”
BT was already, in 2014, among the first global providers to enable its customers to connect directly to Azure through a security-enhanced, reliable and resilient connection. As a result, BT’s enterprise customers can build a seamless, hybrid IT environment encompassing their corporate networks, data centers and Azure. It also includes single billing facilities for the BT Compute and Azure services. Customers can leverage BT’s network and systems integration strengths, in combining their own cloud with Microsoft’s cloud under a single service wrap from BT.
Houlder, a global marine and offshore design and engineering company, was one of BT’s first customers to use Azure ExpressRoute connectivity.
Andy Matthews, IT Manager at Houlder, said: “Adding Office 365 to the existing Microsoft Azure ExpressRoute connectivity provided by BT is a logical extension of the service for us. In our own testing of ExpressRoute for Office 365, the service delivered consistently high performance, security and reliability. The new service also simplifies management so customers can operate both Microsoft cloud environments through one resilient connection. This supports Houlder’s goal of reducing our in-house infrastructure, freeing up resources to focus on our innovative engineering output instead.”
Azure ExpressRoute for Office 365 adds to the wide range of business solutions that BT already offers with Microsoft, and demonstrates both companies’ commitment to cloud interoperability for their customers.