With the growing need and demand for infrastructure that costs less but is effective, Cloud services and storage have taken an upper hand in the market. Many IT infrastructures are now turning towards the Cloud. Therefore, with Cloud services being so actively utilized, it is no surprise that Microsoft’s Windows Azure, their very own professional cloud platform, received such widespread response from their target audience enabling it to move towards the billion dollar mark.

Windows Azure: The Latest Billion-Dollar Business for Microsoft

Among one of the four cloud services professionally offered by Microsoft, Windows Azure was launched in 2010 and has accrued over $1 billion in sales annually and is available in over 21 countries worldwide. Although it was considered to be a rather exclusive group, Microsoft has worked hard to produce and enlarge the number of members in their billion dollar club and you can find well known products here thrown in with the mix.

Already known for its heavy hitters in the market like the Xbox, Office, Windows, Share Point, Windows Server, SQL Server, Exchange, Visual Studio, System Center, Dynamics and online advertisements, Microsoft seems all set to launch more ‘legacy businesses’ that can be as long lasting as these in the market.

Among the ones mentioned above, the trio of Windows Server, Windows and Office are undeniably ‘legacy businesses’ with an extensive national and international user base. However, Xbox also successfully garners attention from a wide audience although its target audience is somewhat smaller and restricted to one particular field.

Not far behind in this matter, Windows Azure has managed to establish a user base of almost 200,000 for itself. Said to be growing constantly at a rate of 1,000 per day, Windows Azure seems all set to establish itself as a permanent member of Microsoft’s billion dollar business club.

Coupled with a few choice services and many more still being developed, Windows Azure is growing strongly and helping strengthen Microsoft’s image in the market despite the obvious blow dealt by the failure of Windows 8 to take hold of the market. With hardly any of the other new products launched by Microsoft qualifying as a bestseller, it seems that Windows Azure has ripened and borne fruit at exactly the right time.

Consumer markets have been favorable in their response towards Windows Azure, encouraging Microsoft to delve deeper into developing and updating their Cloud based services. However, it is pleasing to see that Windows Azure has grown at such a rate which once again reinforces Microsoft’s dedication to excellence while proving that products like Windows and Office are not the only things that can define Microsoft.

With strong growth in the market being predicted for the upcoming year, Windows Azure seems all set to dominate the Cloud genre in the IT business infrastructure. Building upon the success of Windows Azure, Microsoft is all set to introduce Office 365 to its ranks of $1 billion dollar businesses. Already pulling in some impressive numbers, Office 365 is predicted to achieve this goal possibly by June or the end of the fiscal year of Microsoft.

[Image via visualstudiomagazine]