Microsoft’s Azure cloud services have been trailing Amazon’s AWS as a cloud solutions provider for a little while now and part of the company’s shortcomings have had to do with its appeal to small, medium and individual business customers.
While the company has been racking up larger enterprise, educational and governmental support, the segment of small to mid size business owners and individual entrepreneurs have been steadily adopting AWS or (in some cases) Google’s cloud offerings.
Aware of this oversight, Microsoft is attempting to course-correct and highlight the benefits of using Azure Storage Blob Service for hosting simple websites. Omer Amin, a Microsoft employee, examines how an individual customer could take advantage of using Azure Storage Blob Service as a cheaper alternative to say, using WordPress or another static option.
I was helping a friend setup a website for his new restaurant. The requirements were pretty simple. List the menu, hours, and directions that would work well on tablets and mobile devices (aka responsive design). He was running all his marketing, promotions, and social interactions through Twitter and Facebook pages. The website was there just to host the basics.
A simple solution would be to host the website through the Azure Blob Storage service. The Blob Service allows you to store and retrieve content. The Blob service supports REST Api’s, therefore there is no reason why you can’t view .html files through the browser.”
Amin’s anecdotal example evolves into a rather detailed step by step process of creating and using Azure Storage Blob Service for more personal control of a business’s online presence.
By no means is the process as simple as grabbing a templated WordPress blog, but following Amin’s examples and detailed instructions arguably offers a more robust set of controls over data while also minimizing hosting cost to as little as 3 cents a month in some instances.
Visit the Microsoft Developer blog for Omer Amin’s examples and step by step creation process or for more information and documentation on Azure Storage Blob Services in general.Further reading: AWS, Azure Blob Service, Cloud, Microsoft, WordPress