Microsoft made a slew of Azure announcements at its Build 2018 developers conference today. Build has transformed from a Windows event to an Azure event, in line with Microsoft’s growing cloud business. Microsoft is open-sourcing the Azure IoT Edge Runtime, launching Project Kinect for Azure, and further embracing Kubernetes.
Last month, the company announced an investment of $5 billion in internet of things (IoT) over the next four years, tripling its prior spending. Microsoft is betting that most developers are, or will become, IoT developers, whether they know it or not. The growth of cloud and edge apps is unmistakable, and the company believes running code at the edge will become the new norm.
Azure IoT Edge
At Build 2017, Microsoft introduced Azure IoT Edge, which lets edge devices run AI, Azure services, and custom logic to not just generate insights, but act on them both locally and autonomously. Microsoft has since deployed various Azure services to the edge, and now it’s gearing up to push more.
But first Microsoft is open-sourcing the Azure IoT Edge runtime to let its customers modify, debug, and get more control over edge applications. Azure IoT Edge already supports an “open ecosystem of services in containers,” and Microsoft hopes the community can dream up new use cases if they can examine exactly how the runtime works.
Microsoft is also moving Azure Cognitive Services to support edge deployment on Azure IoT Edge “over the next several months.” Custom Vision is first in line and now runs on Azure IoT Edge. The service, which was released in May 2017, lets developers…