Microsoft has announced a long-term alliance with Jio to accelerate India’s digital transformation. The announcement was made at the Annual General Meeting of Reliance Industries by Mukesh Ambani, the company’s Chairman and Managing Director.
Reliance Jio, a subsidiary of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL), is India’s leading carrier with over 340 million users and has transformed the country’s telecom landscape with affordable data connectivity.
The 10-year comprehensive commitment combines the world-class capabilities of both companies to offer a detailed set of solutions comprising connectivity, computing, storage solutions, and other technology services for Indian businesses. The strategic effort will aim to enhance the adoption of data analytics, AI, cognitive services, blockchain, Internet of Things, and edge computing among small and medium enterprises.
As part of this new agreement, Jio will move its internal workforce to productivity and collaboration tools available with Microsoft 365 and will migrate its non-network applications to the Microsoft Azure cloud platform.
Jio’s connectivity infrastructure will promote the adoption of the Microsoft Azure cloud platform within its growing ecosystem of startups, as part of Jio’s cloud-first strategy. The company will build new custom solutions on Microsoft Azure for large enterprises and leverage Microsoft’s speech and language cognitive services for its device ecosystem, providing support in 13 Indian languages, with the flexibility to add other languages.
The company will also set up datacenters in locations across India, consisting of next-generation compute, storage, and networking capabilities. Microsoft will deploy its Azure platform in these datacenters to support Jio’s offerings. The initial two datacenters are being set up in the states of Gujarat and Maharashtra and are targeted to be fully operational in 2020.
In a blog post, Anant Maheshwari, President, Microsoft India, said that this joint effort is likely to unlock and accelerate digital innovation in India at an unprecedented scale.