The Microsoft cloud platform is a set of integrated computing, storage, data, and network services and applications.

Microsoft Azure is an open and flexible platform that provides all the necessary building blocks for rapid construction, implementation, and management of cloud-based solutions.

Microsoft Azure offers a wide range of services based on application, computing, storage, and network consumption. You can build applications using any language, tool, or framework, on a totally automated platform, and it provides scalable resources in a matter of minutes.

Microsoft Azure is widely considered both a Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) offering.

Microsoft categorizes Azure services into 11 main product types:

  • Compute – these services provide virtual machines, containers, batch processing and remote application access.
  • Web and mobile – these services support the development and deployment of web and mobile applications, and also offer features for API management, notification and reporting.
  • Data storage – this category includes Database as a Service offerings for SQL and NoSQL, as well as unstructured and cached cloud storage.
  • Analytics – these services provide distributed analytics and storage, as well as real-time analytics, big data analytics, data lakes, machine learning and data warehousing.
  • Networking – this group includes virtual networks, dedicated connections and gateways, as well as services for traffic management, load balancing and domain name system (DNS) hosting.
  • Media and content delivery network (CDN) – these services include on-demand streaming, encoding and media playback and indexing.
  • Hybrid integration – these are services for server backup, site recovery and connecting private and public clouds.
  • Identity and access management (IAM) – these offerings ensure only authorized users can employ Azure services, and help protect encryption keys and other confidential information.
  • Internet of Things (IoT) – these services help users capture, monitor and analyze IoTdata from sensors and other devices.
  • Development – these services help application developers share code, test applications and track potential issues. Azure support a range of application programming languages, including JavaScript, Python, .NET and Node.js.
  • Management and security – these products help cloud administrators manage their Azure deployment, schedule and run jobs, and create automation. This product group also includes capabilities for identifying and responding to cloud security threats.