Recap of of World Partner Conference: Facebook says Microsoft “got cool again”

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Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference, WPC 2016, is officially well underway this week in Toronto. With over 15,000 attendees and 144 countries represented, Microsoft Partners from around the world are attending the event.  WPC is a can’t miss experience for the folks who are looking to grow their businesses and strengthen ties with Microsoft.  As always, we at WinBeta have been covering WPC all week long, and here is a recap of what has happened thus far.

Day one: Azure, cloud, HoloLens

To begin WPC, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella made it clear during his introducing speech that the main theme for the three-day event would be digital transformation.  Microsoft’s new Channel Chief Gavriella Schuster also added that Microsoft aims to be both a technology partner and a business partner to companies going through digital transformation.

Microsoft also invited General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt to the stage, who announced a partnership that will make the company’s Predix platform for the Industrial Internet available on the Microsoft Azure cloud for industrial businesses.

Lastly, Microsoft showcased how Japan Airlines used the HoloLens mixed-reality headset to develop two proof-of-concept programs to provide training for engine mechanics and for flight crew trainees who want to be promoted to co-pilot status.

Day two: Facebook, Office 365 and the cloud,  and Windows 10

For day two, Corporate Vice President for Office 365 Client Applications Kirk Koenigsbauer, EVP for Cloud and Enterprise Scott Guthrie and Corporate Vice President for Windows and Devices Group Yusuf Medhi took to the stage to share Microsoft’s vision about digital transformation and what it means for businesses of all sizes.

Microsoft also announced during day two of WPC that Facebook will use Office 365 as the best tool to help their 13,000 employees be more efficient and more productive.  Facebook CIO Tim Campos also noted that he sees Office 365 as supporting Facebook’s mission; “Give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected,” and declared that one reason for making the decision was simply that Microsoft “got cool again.”

In line with the Facebook news, Kirk Koenigsbauer revealed that Office 365 is now empowering over 70 million people each month in companies of all sizes. It was also announced that the Redmond giant will be the first company to be recognized by AIG for security and compliance strength.

Lastly, on stage demos of Windows 10 wrapped up day two. Along with a presentation on the security features of Windows 10, all star presenter Bryan Roper also joined the stage and showed off the many upcoming features seen in the Windows 10 Anniversary Update.

Day three: Skype, new resources for partners in a changing cloud market

At day three, New Channel Chief Gavriella Schuster shared updates & investments to help partners maximize profitability in the cloud. President and Chief legal officer Brad Smith also joined in and explained how cloud computing is creating opportunities to transform every aspect of life and to solve some of the world’s big problems. Lastly, corporate Vice President & Chief Evangelist Steve Guggenheimer shared news about the Microsoft Professional Degree program, the first program of its kind to offer employer-endorsed, university caliber curriculum for professionals at any stage of their career.

As a side note, during day three of WPC it was announced that automatic transcription and translating would be coming to Skype Meeting Broadcast sometime in 2016.


So, there you have it. That is a wrap of the biggest news from WPC 2016. Have you been keeping up with all the news? Let us know your thoughts on WPC 2016 by dropping us a comment below!

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