Microsoft 365

Introducing Microsoft 365

During the last twelve months, Arden Group’s relationship with Microsoft has gone from strength to strength. Internal training initiatives, as well as strong market demand has resulted in Arden being awarded Microsoft’s coveted Gold Partner Status.

In order to build on this success, last week our Group Sales Director, Michael Gowen, 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.

This year didn’t disappoint.

Microsoft’s overall message was very clear- the age of digital transformation is upon us. Through their cloud capability, Microsoft is the driving force behind industry progression. The question therefore 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 to four business drivers:

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

The move will work to enable digital transformation. This will, therefore, empower employees and engage customers, as well as optimising operations and transforming products.  Additionally, Microsoft has now redesigned their portfolio to meet the changing needs of today’s modern workplace.

Key Product Changes & Releases

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 in order 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.

Satya Nadella

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 of these packages is designed around varying business requirements.

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

The Azure Stack

Another major announcement which is likely to generate big waves in the market was the Azure Stack.

Available in September 2017, Azure stack is an extension of the Azure platform. It will bring 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. It will also suit 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. In particular, 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. Additionally, to allow for simple budget management, the devices can be bundled and paid for on an OPEX plan.

Mixed Reality Technology

The final release was the development of the Microsoft Hololens. Designed to rival the newly relaunched Google Glasses, the Hololens is the first self-contained, holographic computer. It will, therefore, enable 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 and staying ahead of the curve.

They continue to deliver 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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Microsoft Inspire 2018