Microsoft Windows Azure now has more than 10,000 customers according to ZD Net. Windows Azure is Microsoft’s cloud operating system for web and enterprise developers to leverage existing .NET programming skills and investments while gaining the advantages of running applications in the cloud. It is promising that Microsoft is able to achieve 10,000 customers since its launch in February. This is an opportunity for new developers and businesses to innovate and make an impact in an emerging technology platform by leveraging existing independent-developer or enterprise-level .NET skills.
Microsoft also has 40+ million customers of it’s Online services which are pay-as-you-go online services like hosted Exchange and Dynamics, instead of software that you install on your own server.
These statistics are indicators that Microsoft is making the “cloud” a part of it’s core business with real paying customers, unlike some other web companies that have many users of free services but few actual customers. For business in the cloud to be sustainable it will need customers and profits, not just investments and costs for the web companies. Microsoft is proving that there are customers to be had in the new business world of the cloud.