Microsoft’s Azure platform drives digital transformation

Applications built on top of cutting-edge technology, use cloud services to solve complexed business problems.

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Microsoft’s recent 3rd quarter earnings further demonstrated how the company has pivoted towards the higher-value commercial and cloud application businesses.

The company’s “intelligent cloud” segment, which includes Azure and other related cloud and server-based products, reported revenue of $9.7 billion, an uptick of 22% from the same quarter last year.

Microsoft also shared that its commercial cloud run-rate has hit $38.4 billion. This is big business, and with companies like HP, Chevron, Goodyear, Virgin Atlantic and Enbridge utilising Azure for a myriad of operations, the trusted platform is driving customer success.

Virtual Machines maximize graphical computation power

Microsoft Partnership

Finger Food has worked closely with Microsoft since Finger Food was founded 10 years ago, and in the last 2 years it has focused on integrating Microsoft’s cloud-based services across multiple projects. Many clients were already Microsoft customers, who chose Finger Food as a catalyst to support their digital transformation.

In broad terms Finger Food helps companies understand how they can utilize modern technologies, including cloud services like Azure, as well as platforms that support Augmented and Virtual reality, the Internet of Things, robotics, machine learning and blockchain. The fact is though, the cloud is critical to building a successful scalable architecture for each project and saves on infrastructure costs while reducing the hardware and maintenance burdens.

We have found that Azure offers a wide array of services and products that support our client’s digital transformation efforts. Whether building IoT-focused products that depend on connecting data, devices and assets, or capitalizing on high performance virtual computing, we rely on its security, efficiency and scalability.

The scalability, flexibility, and security of Microsoft Azure makes it the perfect platform for companies looking to use new technologies to impact their business. Recently, we’ve completed a number of projects that address the everyday challenges of our clients, with custom-built solutions that capitalize on Azure.

Data is King – the cloud its Castle

Retail and Natural Resource companies utilize Azure

Mountain Equipment Co-op (Canada’s Go-To Place For Outdoor Gear)

MEC sought a solution that allowed them to better showcase their extensive range of tents, without taking up valuable floor space. We delivered a custom application, built to operate on a range of handheld mobile devices and VR headsets like Microsoft’s Hololens.The application showcases the tents as lifesize, photo-realistic virtual objects, in a custom viewer.

To achieve this, we built a proprietary data pipeline that leverages Azure N-series GPU enabled virtual machines and Azure Storage to maximise photogrammetry workloads using Reality Capture. Using these virtual machines, we were able to access ‘state of the art’ graphical computation power.

Enbridge (One of the leading energy delivery companies in North America)

As a company, Enbridge has already partnered with Microsoft to accelerate their digital transformation through the use of advanced analytics. Enbridge has detailed that Azure is the platform they chose to ensure they get the right data to enable decision making, ensuring they’re deploying the right resources to the right locations at the right times. The company also suggested that to be effective with advanced analytics, companies should abandon traditional IT methods and work with Azure.

Deep Data Visualization

Finger Food is involved in a couple of key Enbridge projects. We’ve already created a visualization framework from a series of raw data sets, that allows experts to better plan maintenance activities by better understanding ground behaviour, pipe movement and pipe conditions without the need to dig up physical pipes.

We built a holographic rendering of geological hazards to redefine the assessment process, giving pipeline integrity experts extensive visibility, drive down their costs and reduce the threat of pipeline incidents.

Moving forward, we will work closely with Enbridge to utilize the large amounts of data, housed in a massive data lake on the Azure cloud, building custom APIs to access and visualize as much data as the new project requires.

What the future holds

As we continue to embark on new challenges and work with new clients, we’re looking forward to taking full advantage of Azure’s broad range of services, and work with Microsoft, and continue as a driving force behind digital transformation for enterprise.

Hololens 2, for example, looms invitingly on the horizon. It was built, from the get-go, to be a cloud and edge-connected device. We’re already discussing how the new device will impact mixed reality and how it benefits from the power and breadth of Azure’s service offering – including the Azure digital twins, Kinect, spatial anchors and remote rendering capabilities.