AT&T commits to moving its employees to Microsoft 365

A day after IBM and AT&T unveil a strategic cloud partnership, Microsoft and AT&T announce a new one of their own.
Written by Mary Jo Foley, Senior Contributing Editor
Credit: AT&T

In an expansion of their existing partnership, Microsoft and AT&T Communications announced a multiyear deal via which AT&T will be moving "much" of its workforce to Microsoft 365, its bundle of Windows 10, Office 365 and Enterprise Mobility + Security. The deal was announced on July 17, a day after AT&T and IBM revealed their cloud partnership.

AT&T also committed to making Microsoft its "preferred" (non-exclusive) cloud provider for its non-network applications. AT&T has said it plans to migrate most of its non-network workloads to the cloud by 2024.

On July 16, AT&T and IBM announced they also were expanding their partnership with a multi-year deal via which AT&T's Business applications will go to the IBM Cloud. IBM also will be helping manage AT&T's hybrid cloud infrastructure, and AT&T Business is making IBM the primary provider of software-defined networking for the company. AT&T Business plans to continue to use Red Hat's open-source platform for managing internal applications.

A "person familiar with the matter" is telling some news outlets that the latest Microsoft and AT&T deal is worth more than $2 billion. As Reuters notes, the Microsoft-AT&T deal does not cover core networking operations for cell phones and other devices. 

As Microsoft and AT&T announced in February this year, AT&T has said it plans to bring its network-edge compute capabilities into the AT&T 5G network with Microsoft Azure.

"The (Microsoft-AT&T) alliance builds on the companies' joint enterprise solutions for networking, IoT, and blockchain in the market, including recent testing of an edge computing-based tracking and detection system for drones. They expect to announce additional services later in 2019," a Microsoft spokesperson said.

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