Satya Nadella
Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft

Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft, opened the Corenote session on 17th July with the company’s mission:

Microsoft Motto

The entire world was watching and he brilliantly leveraged the Inspire 19′ stage to show what Microsoft has achieved with partners in the last fiscal year. We are covering the most significant statements made by Satya at the event.

Azure, the world’s computer


“Ninety per cent of the data that we have today was created in the last two years. That’s the explosion of computing and data. We have 1 billion users of Windows, a couple of billion smartphones. But 50 billion [endpoints are] all connected to the cloud. That’s what’s leading to us building out Azure as the world’s computer. We now have 54 data centre regions. We’re very, very thrilled to have the latest regions in the Middle East and in Africa. It’s so exciting.”

And we’re also building everything that we’re doing across Azure with openness. Windows and Linux are first class. Java and .NET are first class. SQL Server, Postgres is first class. Red Hat, VMware, Oracle–all of these applications and infrastructure can be first-class on Azure. This doesn’t mean we don’t have a very opinionated view on what a modern application that is event-driven, serverless, could look like. We have a fantastic app model, with all the toolchains around it. But the thing that we’ve ensured is that this new-generation app model composes with everything that you’ve done in the past. That, to me, is the key of how we’re going to move tech intensity in every corporation, every company, every institution.”

Taking the Cloud to the Edge

“We’re not stopping at the cloud. We’re taking the cloud to the edge, with consistency. Consistency in operating models, that means management security. Consistency in the development environment and the tech stacks. And when we talked about the edge over the last couple of years, the last year, it’s become real. Airbus has Azure Stack powering many of their critical operations. And Azure Stack is the only consistent stack at the edge, of any public cloud, with full operational sovereignty. And as we meet the real-world needs of the world today, this is going to be so critical.”

He showed how Starbucks using computing technologies to deliver high-end services.

“Starbucks has an Azure Sphere — a microcontroller that’s connected to Azure, think of it as the smallest compute node of Azure — in every espresso machine. The 9 billion microcontrollers that are shipped each year, just imagine all of those getting connected, becoming first-class compute nodes in an Azure fabric.”

PowerApps for Citizen Developers

“500 million apps are going to get created in the next five years. Think about that. That’s more apps than the last 40 years … The challenge of 500 million applications [is that] we’re just not going to have professional developers to build these applications. So we need citizen developers. Empowering citizen developers is what the Power Platform has been built for. It’s great to see the momentum–whether it’s on Power BI, whether it’s Flow or PowerApps. All of these are coming together to drive the domain-specific development by citizen developers.”

“It builds on Azure services, it has this common data model, it has connectivity back to Dynamics 365 and Microsoft 365. So you can think of all of the applications inside of Microsoft 365 and Dynamics 365 as microservices and data that are available for any PowerApp developer. You have connectors to all the popular apps–SAP, Adobe, Workday, Salesforce. Any application you want, you again can consume data and launch it from there. And you, of course, can do the same with your own applications. This is, perhaps, the best composition from Azure all the way to citizen developers. In fact, there can be a workflow between professional developers working on Azure who can then create a microservice and expose it to a PowerApp developer. That’s the type of developer activity that we see. And, we have a new addition to the PowerApps family–it’s the AI Builder. It takes all those magical AI cognitive services capabilities, and brings it to any application that you may want to build.”

AI-induced Dynamics 365

“With Dynamics 365, you now have these modular, modern modules for all of the functions–whether it’s sales, finance, operations, support. And it’s great to see these getting deployed at scale. And one of the other things that have happened in the last year is AI across all of these functions. In fact, there’s a completely new set of modules that are these insight modules. You can predict your sales pipeline and drive sales efficiency. You can improve your customer service because of insights. You can improve your customer 360 views. These are all new insight modules that are part of Dynamics. You can deploy them with any customer who may have a different business system. Because there’s no one who’s deploying these AI-first modules. This is the best opportunity for everyone in this room to become a strategic partner for our customers–to be able to infuse into every customer these AI-first modules. I think in the next year, hopefully, all of you will discover this opportunity. It would be a great way for you to grow your own strategic business.”

Mixed Reality Cloud

“There is a new commercial opportunity that’s getting unlocked. It’s a mixed reality cloud. It’s [the] bridging of business process and any application across the boundaries of what’s virtual and what’s physical. HoloLens 2 is an absolute breakthrough. It’s got twice the field-of-view, twice the comfort. We’ve also now built applications right into Dynamics 365–layout, guides, remote assistance, product visualizer. These are all out-of-the-box applications that take advantage of this new medium of mixed reality. And we have many, many third-party applications, from industrial automation to architecture.

We’ve also built out a new service in Azure, Azure Spatial Anchors. The combination of Azure Spatial Anchors, applications in Dynamics 365, a device like HoloLens 2, and any phone with an AR framework, can all come together to power this next generation of mixed-reality apps, and unlock an amazing opportunity for all of you.”

Microsoft 365

“[There are] 2 billion first-line workers, and 77 per cent of these 2 billion workers feel they don’t have the tools to empower them. We’ve always focused our tools with the knowledge worker. But the real opportunity for us is to bring knowledge workers and first-line workers together to empower companies and people. And that’s what we’re doing with Microsoft 365. When we say we want to build out the world’s productivity cloud, it’s about bringing that knowledge worker and first-line worker and empowering them.”

In the last year, we’ve had tremendous momentum. Ninety-five per cent of the Fortune 500 are using Microsoft 365. And all of that is fueling more and more rapid innovation. Windows 10 — and its adoption in the enterprise — it’s the fastest growth we’ve seen, in the last year. Innovation in devices–small devices like Surface Go, or Surface Hub, and our OEM partners who are continuing to innovation around devices. The AI that’s getting infused into all of the Office applications. Video has become first class with Stream. Security and compliance are huge value propositions of Microsoft 365. That’s what’s fueling all of this growth and adoption.

The one product that has had an absolute breakout year is Teams. Teams are the hub for teamwork. It’s really four things in one. It has chat. It has meetings. It brings together collaboration, using all the richness of Office tools, within that same scaffolding. It’s the business process workflow. That’s what Teams are about. It defies even the category definitions that are there out in the marketplace. And that’s what’s driving this tremendous momentum.”

Gavriella Schuster, Corporate Vice President for One Commercial Partner at Microsoft Corporation
Gavriella Schuster, Corporate Vice President for One Commercial Partner at Microsoft Corporation

She presented the corenote session on 15th July. The following are the statements that addressed the issues, announcements and all new updates at Microsoft Inspire 19.

Internal Use Rights

“As you may know, a couple weeks ago, we announced changes to the program competencies and internal use rights. The response from you, our partner ecosystem, was overwhelmingly negative. We clearly underestimated the value of those benefits and the impact that would have on you and your businesses.”

“You know, your partnership means more to us than anything. And we value the relationship and the trust that we’ve built in that partnership. Because it is based on commitment, integrity and trust. And it requires us to have ongoing communication, collaboration and accountability. When I heard your response, and I listened to what you were saying—and I read every single blog and tweet and article—in my mind, there was really no choice but for us to walk back on that change.”

“So we are going to keep the FY19 competencies and internal use rights just as they are. And you have my commitment that I will continue—we will continue—to listen, to learn. And though we may stumble, we will grow together and we will celebrate our wins together.”

Office 365 & Teams

“There are 76 million customers in SMB. It is an $80 billion market opportunity. And Office 365 is in less than 10 per cent of those customers. That is a lot of upside for all of you. And now, once you have that secure socket from which to build, then you can start to add additional services, like Teams.”

“How many of you remember the explosive growth of SharePoint about a decade ago? Teams is already on a faster trajectory than that … You are able to bring the entire business process and create a whole new user experience [with Teams]. You can bring all the business applications to the forefront of that user experience in one single shared workspace.”

Azure Migration

“You know that we estimate about 60 per cent of our server installed base is still on Windows Server and SQL Server 2008. That’s 24 million instances. That is a $50 billion market opportunity that you should be going after right now, this year. Because those customers are vulnerable and exposed. They are on server technology from 2008 … You run the risk of breaking trust with your customers if you leave them on that server technology. Because you leave them unsupported. And you know you could easily migrate those VMs into Azure and remove that vulnerability for them. And many of you are already going a great job. We have moved a lot of customers this past year.”

“That Windows Server / SQL Server conversation really is a catalyst for a whole new set of services and book of business with that customer. Once you’re in, you’re in. And that earns you a way into the real conversation that you want to have. Because every single one of us knows that just moving legacy workloads into the cloud is not really what the cloud is all about. What the cloud is all about—where you get the power of the cloud—is when you can drive digital transformation.”

“And you have to earn your way into that conversation. And we have barely scratched the surface there. Because if you take all of the work that we’ve all done, that every cloud service vendor has done over the last few years, we are still only 5 per cent of that total addressable market. And that market is poised for explosive growth. And we want to help you take advantage of it.”

Azure Lighthouse

“We’re investing in you, with a new service that we call Azure Lighthouse. Azure Lighthouse builds partners in by design into Azure, by enabling multi-customer, multi-tenant management, at scale in a secure environment with automation. So that Azure becomes your best platform to deliver those managed services to your customers. We’re going to continue to invest in that service for you. And once you unlock cloud migrations, you unleash the customer’s data. And data is the currency of the cloud. Then you have the opportunity to start reasoning over that data, to build intelligent design with AI and analytics, and help customer to re-look at their whole business and think about it in a totally different way, and think about their business decisions completely differently. And that moves you from being a strategic supplier to a strategic advisor. And I know that that is a place that we all want to be.”

Marketplace & CSP

“Last year I told you that you want to be in the Marketplace. And many of you heeded my advice. And we now have over 12,000 applications and services in the marketplace. We are delivering over 350,000 leads every single month on those solutions out to you. And we’re doing about $90 million a month in the Azure Marketplace, which is really enabling services. We started a pilot on what we call transactable offers in AppSource. And that’s really where you want to be. So this year I’m going to say, that not only do you want to be listed in Marketplace, but you actually want to have a transactable offer. Because that enables us to activate three additional channels to market for you. One is, the Marketplace itself, where the customer can buy directly on your paper. The second is enabling us to pull your services through our sellers on our Microsoft paper. The third is to enable all those partners transacting CSP to be able to pull your services through their paper in CSP. So that is not only activating 22,000 Microsoft sellers all around the world but the 70,000 Microsoft partners that we have transacting through CSP on your behalf. And, we are going to incent our sellers on your services. We are also going to incent our partners through CSP on your behalf. And we will put more go-to-market dollars in for every service that you have listed in AppSource as a transactable offer. So I talked a little bit about how our relationship has changed. The tables have turned, and we have become your channel …

The flip side of the marketplace is CSP. If you are delivering services, CSP is the way that you want to deliver those services into the marketplace. Because CSP enables you to embed not only Microsoft’s first-party services but any of those third-party Marketplace services into the packages that you offer to your customers. So you can make them completely unique and differentiated out to your customers, and then provide managed services on top of that. This year, we’ve already crossed the $4 billion mark in CSP together. And we have over 3.5 million customers under contract in CSP now. And those partners transacting CSP are seeing 40 per cent year over year growth. This year, we’re moving CSP onto the modern commerce platform, which enables us to actually collapse that delta in the Azure engineering roadmap—so that we can deliver all of those Azure services to you through CSP. And it enables the customer to be more mobile on their purchasing. And we are building in, by design, security and data privacy, through multi-factor authentication in Azure Active Directory.”

Judson Althoff Executive Vice President of Worldwide Commercial Business at Microsoft Corporation
Judson Althoff Executive Vice President of Worldwide Commercial Business at Microsoft Corporation

Innovation Priorities

“All of our solution areas will get better in FY20. The innovation that we’re bringing forward is simply fantastic. You’re going to see more collaborative capabilities in Teams. AI capabilities enriched in Teams. Differentiation by industry. Investments in security, in compliance.” said Althoff.

“The true richness in the modern workplace. Our business applications will have AI out of the box. Mixed-reality capabilities, open data, common data models for the industry to innovate on top of and unlock new business solutions at scale. In apps and [infrastructure], we’re going to invest in IoT, we’re going to invest in the hybrid capabilities. DevOps has really got to be, for us, something that we all work on together because it is really what unlocks this notion of democratizing digital and empowering developers. GitHub is a first-class citizen for us here at Microsoft.” he added.

“And of course, in data and AI, you’re going to see some just fantastic things. We’re going to bring you limitless data, unlimited analytics. HoloLens 2 will come to market, mixed-reality services will be open and available for you to innovate on top of … Our AI services will become richer and more powerful so that you can bring the future forward and enrich the work that people do.”