“The Cloud” plays an increasingly significant role in our lives – enabling remote work and learning, global collaboration, business continuity, supporting discovery and innovation, and importantly, powering critical life and safety services. Today we’re outlining additional cloud infrastructure investments Microsoft is making to ensure organisations of all sizes in Australia and New Zealand can continue to transform their business operations and accelerate the pace of innovation. This includes upcoming availability of Azure Availability Zones (AZs) in our Australia Southeast (Melbourne) and New Zealand North (Auckland) datacenter regions, to support additional services and higher reliability.
Microsoft’s global cloud infrastructure spans 60+ datacenter regions across the globe, connected by over 280,000 kilometres of optical fibre, and built to deliver on our customers’ stringent expectations of security, data residency, reliability, and sustainability. In Australia and NZ, Microsoft operates datacenter regions in Sydney, Melbourne, and Canberra today, with a new datacenter region coming soon to Auckland, NZ. This geographic separation of infrastructure is a key requirement for many organisations to meet disaster recovery objectives for critical infrastructure. However, multi-regional architectures can be challenging and are often reserved for only the most critical workloads.
Azure Availability Zones make multi-regional architecture much easier by providing infrastructure redundancy within a datacenter region. In 2020 we launched this capability in our Australia East (Sydney) datacenter region, giving customers the ability to distribute cloud resources across three physically separate locations around the Sydney metropolitan area. This helps organisations better protect their applications and data from infrastructure risks, ranging from technical software issues, hardware failures and natural disasters like earthquakes, floods, and fires. By expanding our AZ capabilities to our Australia Southeast (Melbourne) and upcoming New Zealand North (Auckland) regions, customers will have multiple low latency and high resiliency cloud locations, and more choices for managing their workloads in the Microsoft Cloud.
The Australia Southeast region has grown significantly since launching in 2014, and now encompasses multiple data centres across metropolitan Melbourne. Customers’ workloads are already protected from unexpected downtime or data loss through comprehensive Azure Backup services, Premium storage (99.9% uptime SLA), Availability Sets (99.95% uptime SLA) and region failover options. Azure Availability Zones will further enhance this resilience by offering an industry leading 99.99% financially backed uptime guarantee.
Ducas Francis, Head of Technology – Cloud, Reliability and Platform Engineering, Woolworths, has welcomed the addition of new Availability Zones in our Australia Southeast region. The major retailer recently migrated its business-critical SAP system to Microsoft Azure.
“The needs of our business and our customers are constantly changing, which requires Woolworths’ technology infrastructure to be scalable, agile and resilient,” says Francis. “Microsoft’s new Azure Availability Zones in the Australia Southeast region will further support our efforts to innovate in the cloud and simplify work for our teams in order to deliver exceptional customer experiences across our network of stores and online channels.”
The National Australia Bank (NAB) will also benefit from additional cloud resiliency offerings in Melbourne. These AZs will support the NAB’s strategic five-year partnership with Microsoft to deliver its multi-cloud strategy.
“Resilience is the foundation of everything we do in technology, underpinning our ability to provide our customers with great banking experiences,” says Steve Day, Chief Technology Officer at NAB.
“Microsoft’s investment in additional Azure Availability Zones in Melbourne will enable us to deploy critical applications into the Australia Southeast region.”
The expanded scale and services of Microsoft’s cloud offerings in Australia and New Zealand are made possible by close partnership with several data centre providers as well as our own datacenter construction efforts. These innovative facilities will support current and future demand for Microsoft Cloud services from government, business, and consumers in Australia.
Microsoft has operated in Australia and New Zealand for 39 years – and we continue to invest in the region and the ecosystem of partners and technology providers we rely on, to meet the demand of delivering fast, reliable, and sustainable cloud services.