Microsoft to deliver Rio 2016 websites

Supplier secures its biggest ever cloud deal in Brazil

The Rio 2016 Olympic Committee has hired Microsoft to create and maintain the three main websites for next year's Games.

The deal, which will see the websites hosted on cloud computing platform Azure, is understood to be the largest ever Microsoft contract in Brazil when it comes to the supplier's cloud offering.

Microsoft will use six of its own datacenters based in Brazil, United States, Europe and Asia to deliver the websites, according to Brazilian newspaper Valor Econômico. The supplier will be focusing on user experience aspects to ensure that content is displayed properly even if the user's broadband connection is poor.

The first of the three websites supports the Torch Relay and will go live in April 2016, a 100 days before the Games begin. The main website with results and updated information on the tournament will go live in August as the Olympics commence and the third will support the Paralympics.

It is expected that 12 billion web pages will be viewed during the 17 days of the Olympic Games, with 60 percent of which being accessed via mobile devices.

In terms of IT supporting the Games, the Brazilian technology team follows guidelines set by the International Olympic Committee, which splits internal customers into nine groups that include country committees, athletes and spectators.

The tech structure required to stage the sporting events will include about 80 different systems and applications, which will be accessed from about 12,000 computers and 3,800 printing devices. About 500 servers will also be deployed for the event.

Currently, the Rio team is working on the testing phase for the IT supporting the competition. This stage started in August 2014 and will go on until January 2016. The aim at this phase is to get the Technology Operation Center and the Equipment Deployment Center up and running, as well as getting all Games Management Systems live.

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