Microsoft 365

Introducing Microsoft 365

Over the last twelve months, Arden Group’s relationship with Microsoft has gone from strength to strength. Internal training initiatives, coupled with strong market demand has resulted in Arden being awarded Microsoft’s coveted Gold Partner Status. To build on this success, last week our Group Sales Director, Michael Gowen, hopped on a plane, crossed the pond and joined 16,000 Microsoft Partners at the annual Microsoft Inspire partners conference. The weeklong event, which took place in Washington DC, is used by Microsoft as a platform to launch game changing products and services, and this year didn’t disappoint.

Microsoft’s overall message was very clear, the age of digital transformation is upon us, and through their cloud capability, Microsoft is the driving force behind industry progression. The question was, what is their plan to deliver against this goal?

The foundation of the plan was based around classifying Microsoft’s complete product and solutions portfolio into four business drivers:

  •  Modern Workplace
  •  Business Applications
  • Applications Infrastructure
  • Data and AI

The move will work to enable digital transformation, which in turn will empower employees, engage customers, optimise operations and transform products. Building up from this foundation, Microsoft has redesigned their portfolio meet the changing needs of today’s modern workplace.

Key Product Changes & Releases

Satya Nadella

Introducing Microsoft 365!

The headline announcement, delivered by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella during his keynote presentation was the introduction of Microsoft 356.

Microsoft 365 brings together Office 365, Windows 10 and Enterprise Mobility + Security to deliver a complete, intelligent and secure solution. Think of it as a cost effective, cloud-based bundle offer, designed to reduce supplier management and drive digital transformation projects through added flexibility, productivity, AI and advanced security.

Nadella stated “The workplace is transforming—from changing employee expectations, to more diverse and globally distributed teams, to an increasingly complex threat landscape. From these trends, we are seeing a new culture of work emerging. Our customers are telling us they are looking to empower their people with innovative technology to embrace this modern culture of work.”

Similar to the Office 365 model, Microsoft is introducing two packages, Microsoft 365 Enterprise and Microsoft 365 Business, each designed around varying business requirements.

Microsoft 365 Business, which will be launched in Autumn 2017, will meet the needs of the SME market – up to 300 users. The Enterprise offering, which is built on the foundation of the highly successful Secure Product Enterprise, is designed for large organisations and is available for purchase on the 1st August 2017.

The Azure Stack

Another major announcement which is likely to generate big waves in the market was the Azure Stack. Set for delivery in September 2017, Azure stack is an extension of the Azure platform, bringing the agility and fast-paced innovation of cloud computing to on-premises environments. Azure Stack will deliver a robust hybrid cloud solution to those companies, who for regulatory reasons, cannot utilise the cloud for all applications and the cloud sceptic who needs a hybrid solution to appease concerns.

Azure Stack

Microsoft sharepoint

Surface, Surface, Surface

Outside of the two main announcements next generation Microsoft Devices were heavily promoted, particularly the New Surface Hub, Surface Laptop and the new Surface Pro. The devices, when in combination with Microsoft 365, will deliver real value and true flexibility to the user moving forward. What’s more, to allow for simple budget management, the devices can be bundled and paid for on an OPEX plan – reflecting recent market trends.

Mixed Reality Technology

Last but not least was the development of the seriously impressive Microsoft Hololens. Designed to rival the newly relaunched Google Glasses, the Hololens is the first self-contained, holographic computer, enabling you to engage with your digital content and interact with holograms in the world around you. Going back to digital transformation in the workplace, both augmented and virtual reality and going to play an increasingly important role in the way in which businesses operate, creating brand new ways to build, sell and service products.


As you can see, it’s exciting times ahead for Microsoft. True to form, they’re adapting fast, staying ahead of the curve and delivering cutting edge technology to the changing requirements of their global customer base. As a Microsoft Gold Partner, Arden Group will continue to work closely with our counterparts at Microsoft HQ to deliver you a complete cutting edge technology package. From Microsoft 365, to Azure, Enterprise Mobility Solutions (EMS) and Skype for business – with Arden Group, you’re in safe hands.

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