Optus ups cloud capability with Microsoft partnership

Optus is working to expand its cloud services capability, becoming a partner of Microsoft's Cloud OS Network in a bid to offer its enterprise and government customers Microsoft Azure-enabled products and services.

Optus Business customers will have access to Microsoft Azure-enabled cloud services, with the Australian telco becoming a partner of Microsoft's Cloud OS Network.

The Singtel subsidiary claimed on Monday that the partnership would see it become the first Australian network service provider to partner locally with Microsoft for its Cloud OS Network, which claims Rackspace and Cisco among its global partners.

The software giant announced its Cloud OS Network in late 2013, when it formalised an initial 25 partnerships with cloud service providers globally, including Aruba, Fujitsu, Lenovo, and Optus Singapore-based parent company Singtel.

"Through this partnership with Microsoft, Optus can now deliver solutions based on the Microsoft Cloud Platform designed to meet enterprise customers' hybrid computing needs," said Microsoft Australia managing director Pip Marlow. "Optus can offer customers more flexibility and control when it comes to managing the cloud environments."

Optus Business managing director John Paitaridis said that the deal would see the company's enterprise and government customers get access to a combination of Microsoft and Optus managed cloud and hosting expertise.

"Increasingly, our customers want more flexibility in the way they use their cloud environment to realise the benefits of as-a-service and consumption-based models," he said.

The announcement comes as Optus CEO Allen Lew reveals that the telco is considering a "premium" charge for the traffic of over-the-top services like Netflix to guarantee higher speeds for those services -- a move that could be at odds with the US-based video-streaming provider's stance on net neutrality.

The launch of Netflix has seen a dramatic impact on Australia's fixed networks. Local ISP iiNet has revealed that already, 25 percent of its network traffic is from Netflix.