Microsoft will announce its rebranding of its "Windows Azure" cloud operating system to "Microsoft Azure," this week, according to a couple of tipsters of mine.
The announcement is expected to happen tomorrow, March 25, and to take effect on April 3, the second day of Microsoft's Build conference in San Francisco, said a couple of individuals who asked not to be identified, but who are familiar with Microsoft's plans.
The rebranding makes sense, given Windows Azure isn't all about Windows. Azure customers can run Linux in virtual machines on the operating system. Azure users also can run Oracle databases and middleware, and use non-Windows-specific development tools, including Java, Ruby, PHP and Python.
But these days, even though Windows is still key to Microsoft, the company is emphasizing it's not Windows-only. Microsoft officials are working to position Microsoft as a cross-platform software and services provider. Microsoft's Office on iPad suite, which the company is expected to launch this Thursday, March 27, is another example of that new corporate positioning.
I asked Microsoft officials to comment on the planned Microsoft Azure rebranding and they declined to comment.