Microsoft has joined the Open Data Center Alliance, an independent IT consortium with a view of providing a unified and open vision for long-term data center and cloud computing standards.
The OCDA—a group that includes Deutsche Bank, Nokia, J.P. Morgan Chase, AT&T, and eBay—will find its position bolstered by the software giant by giving the alliance a greater voice and a gain in credibility moving forward.
The OCDA's chair Mario Mueller said in prepared remarks:
In order to truly accelerate availability of cloud services, enterprise IT needs to work closely with cloud service and solution providers. Microsoft's participation is a valuable addition to the organization's mission, and we heartily welcome their membership.
Windows Azure general manager Bill Hilf said the software giant was "dedicated to serving the industry and customers by providing an open, reliable and global approach to the cloud."
Microsoft, which provides a bevy of cloud-based services and products through its Windows Azure platform, will join as a "contributor member" and will begin adding to the voice of hundreds of other firms in the alliance immediately.
Not only will OCDA membership help Microsoft seek out further support for its platform and gain traction with its cloud-based platform, it will also help the company contribute to the alliance's technical workgroups.
These groups contribute to creating standards and usage models, designed to help design secure federation, cloud security features and interoperability across clouds.
Despite offer prominent cloud services in the highly competitive space, Amazon and Google are noticeably absent from the OCDA.