Microsoft took to the stage for their yearly conference for developer’s logo design and IT professionals on September 22, 2020. Fast forward a few months, Microsoft announced that their Microsoft Ignite conference for 2021 will be scheduled to take place from March 2 to March 4.
This took everyone by surprise including me. More importantly, it made me wonder what they will present at this conference. Will they have innovations to showcase at their biggest event of the year? Looking back at the past history of the event, it also excites me so much so I was anxiously waiting for the conference to take place.
In this article, you will learn about eight critical lessons CIOs can learn from the Microsoft Ignite conference.
Semantic Search as a Service
Have you ever conducted a Google search and got irrelevant results? If yes, then you are not alone. All of us have experienced it. Even though Google is improving its search algorithm to better understand and make sense of users’ queries, there is still a gap. Microsoft is trying to fill in that gap with its semantic search. Combined with Azure Cognitive APIs, it will be able to deliver more user intent-based results instead of looking at keywords users have typed in the search box.
Microsoft showcased this capability at Microsoft Ignite Conference and it looks promising from the looks of things. Microsoft Semantic search will be powered by their unique natural language model. This means that you will no longer have to deal with irrelevant results anymore in search. What is even more interesting is the fact that Microsoft is offering semantic search as a service and are planning to integrate it into their other applications.
If your business operates in a vertical market, which only offers products and services to a specific industry or group of customers then, you should pay attention to vertical cloud announcements. Even though Microsoft already offered automation and analytics tools, they have expanded their feature set for health care businesses.
In addition to this, they have also announced three new cloud offerings for manufacturing, finance and nonprofit businesses. If your business operates in any of these industries, you will find that Microsoft has made your lives far easier and more convenient.
Line Item Extraction
Microsoft even announced updates to their other APIs at Ignite conference. Previously, their form API was only able to find data in receipts to help businesses track your expenses. Now, it will be able to extract information about individual line items, making the payment processing more convenient. That is not all, now you can pull names, expiry dates and document numbers from licenses and passports, a capability that was not previously available.
Mission Critical Cloud Computing
If you are a Microsoft Azure customer, you know that it provides support for mission-critical cloud workloads. At the Microsoft Ignite conference, they announced that they are taking it to the next level with service level agreement guarantees. This provides more flexibility to businesses and enables them to run their critical applications even under heavy loads.
What’s more, customers can also add more resources in the form of virtual machines to handle resource-hungry tasks. This will be a major shift for businesses that are still using legacy systems or cheap dedicated server hosting. In short, Microsoft is allowing businesses to take full advantage of the scalability and flexibility offered by cloud technologies.
Machine Learning Everywhere
Machine learning models have always been limited to powerful traditional systems and have never been run on cloud infrastructure before. Microsoft is here to change that. CIOs have long been demanding tech providers to offer a service that allows them to train machines by running machine learning models in the cloud and Microsoft has listened to their feedback.
With Azure Arc, Microsoft is giving enterprises an option to run machine learning workloads on-premises, network edge or in a hybrid cloud environment. Best of all, you can use your existing cloud infrastructure to run machine learning workloads. Azure Percept, a library of ready-made AI-based models, app development tools and hardware for developing cloud-connected AI systems for your business.
Improved Security Controls
Microsoft is giving its users granular level security controls. This means that now you can control which data centers will store your documents. This can come in handy where industry regulations are strict. Users will also be able to make one-to-one audio and video calls that are end-to-end encrypted. You can even restrict the number of employees who are attending the meetings. Microsoft is also working on a feature that gives users the ability to embed PowerPoint presentations directly into Microsoft Teams.
Rise of Low Code Development Platform
Low code development platforms have seen exponential growth over the last five years. It allows anyone to build software even if they lack coding knowledge. But it’s good to have proper coding knowledge. However if you’re lacking in some knowledge always go for any best website development company so that you have a better development website. Microsoft is planning to dip its toes in this industry. It will do this by combining excel formulas and power functions. Microsoft allows Excel users to create apps with their existing knowledge by giving them a platform. This will save companies from errors which can lead to misleading decisions due to inaccuracies in data inside a spreadsheet. You don’t have to worry about removing errors from large spreadsheets anymore.
Mesh and Mixed Reality
Last but certainly not the least is Microsoft’s mixed reality announcement at Microsoft Ignite. Microsoft Mesh, a mixed reality collaboration platform that lets users collaborate on visuals. Azure remote rendering and Azure object anchors will determine how your enterprise will actually use Mesh technology from Microsoft.
CIOs have a lot of questions when they saw Microsoft demonstrate this technology. How this technology can help businesses improve their productivity and efficiency? What will be the pricing model for this technology? Some are still skeptical because of the resource-intensive nature and think that bandwidth limitation will be a major hurdle in the adoption of this technology. How Microsoft answer all these questions will determine the fate of this mr robot wow technology.
What lessons did you learn from the Microsoft Ignite Conference? Share it with us in the comments section below.