News: Developer conference was shown a number of tools and services for Outlook and the cloud platform.
Microsoft has been demonstrating how its Azure service and Office platform can be put to use by developers to use advanced analytics, machine learning and the Internet of Things to build intelligent apps.
During the second day of the company’s Build 2016 conference the company revealed free development tools that are designed to help scale applications across platforms.
The inclusion of Xmararin’s capabilities in Visual Studio Community and the decision to make the Xamarin Studio for OS X free as a community edition will help increase the flexibility of Microsoft’s offerings across platforms and devices. What this means is that developers will be able to create native cross-platform mobile applications to all major devices, including iOS, Android and Windows.
Additionally the company released several Azure services that are designed to help developers take advantage of IoT and microservices.
The releases include the general availability of Azure Service Fabric, a micrososervices platform that developers can use to design applications and services. A preview of Azure Functions, a service that extends the platform to let developers handle tasks that respond to events common in Web and mobile applications, IoT and big data, has also been revealed.
The company also revealed a preview of Power BI Embedded, a service that allows developers to embed fully interactive reports and visualisations in any application, on any device.
Building on the new features and services, the company showcased how Starbucks is developing an Outlook add-in that will allow people to send gift cards within Outlook, as well as scheduling meetings at nearby Starbucks locations.
Along with the advancements that the company is making on its platforms came a number of Microsoft Edge extension partners being announced such as Pinterest, Reddit, Adblock, LastPass, Amazon Assistant, Evernote and more.
Continuing to talk about companies, Microsoft revealed that BMW is a customer of its cloud business, Azure.
Recently Google revealed that the likes of Walt Disney and Home Depot are using its cloud services. Big name clients are proving to be a hot topic of discussion for the cloud giants as they look to prove that they are the best cloud choice for major enterprises.
BMW’s relationship with Azure is noteworthy because the car manufacturer has been a big customer of AWS, although it remains a customer of AWS it shows a growing trend for major businesses to diversify their cloud services.
At the Build developer conference, BMW launched its BMW Connected mobile app that uses Microsoft’s database and machine learning services to keep tabs on traffic conditions, update travel times, inform friends and family of a driver’s likely arrival time, and more.
The app works by connecting to Outlook’s calendar software in order to determine where a driver is going and then uses Azure’s data analytics resources to suggest the quickest route.