Microsoft's Office iPad downloads hit 27M; new Azure tools released

|About: Microsoft Corporation (MSFT)|By:, SA News Editor

Office iPad app downloads have hit 27M in 5 weeks, Microsoft (MSFT) exec Julia White stated at the company's TechEd conference. The software giant previously announced downloads for the long-anticipated and generally well-reviewed apps topped 12M in a week.

Microsoft is also rolling out several new features for Azure for the second time this spring (previous). Among them is ExpressRoute, a solution that (via service provider partnerships) allows Azure servers to directly connect with enterprise servers without touching the public Internet.

ExpressRoute yields improved performance for hybrid cloud deployments - Microsoft has been trying to use make strong hybrid cloud a differentiator relative to Amazon Web Services (more focused on public cloud services).

Also announced: 1) An Azure anti-malware solution for cloud services and virtual machines. 2) New encryption, data loss prevention, and disaster recovery options. 3) A simplified cloud storage solution that allows multiple virtual machines to share the same file.

Microsoft's Azure revenue rose 150% Y/Y in the March quarter, but the company hasn't given a specific sales figure. Synergy Research recently declared Azure to be "pulling away" from other rivals chasing Amazon, but its estimated sub-10% share remains well below Amazon's ~30% share for now.