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Microsoft Philanthropies to Provide $1 Billion in Cloud Funding

Cloud computing is already being touted as the next big thing in mainstream technology, but it hasn’t quite reached its fullest potential. Although the availability of both consumer- and enterprise-level cloud services has increased over the past few years, it’s going to take some serious investments – in both research and funding – for the cloud to reach its pinnacle. Thanks to recent efforts by Microsoft Philanthropies, who recently donated $1 billion in cloud services to various non-profit agencies and academic institutions, the cloud is now covering more users than ever before.

A recent press release stated, in part: “We’re committed to helping nonprofit groups and universities use cloud computing to address fundamental human challenges. One of our ambitions for Microsoft Philanthropies is to partner with these groups to ensure that cloud computing reaches more people and serves the broadest array of societal needs.”

'''The Primary Reasons Driving Microsoft's Investments'

The purpose behind Microsoft’s recent investment is twofold. First, the company hopes to make cloud computing more accessible to everyone. Microsoft hopes to accomplish them by offering their services to 70,000 nonprofits over the course of the next three years.

Secondly, the team with Microsoft hopes to jumpstart research into the field of cloud computing. In order to accomplish this, they’re expanding their Microsoft Azure for Research initiative by 50%. The program provides free storage, via Azure, as well as access to various resources to students and faculty members. More than 600 research projects have already been started as a result of the program.

This isn’t the first time we’ve seen large-scale investments by Microsoft. In fact, they’ve provided steady funding to Microsoft 365 over the past two years. Although the program is useful in its own right, its potential is hampered by a lack of cloud access.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella spoke about the latest initiative by saying:
“Microsoft is empowering mission-driven organizations around the planet with a donation of cloud computing services — the most transformative technologies of our generation. Now more than 70,000 organizations will have access to technology that will help them solve our greatest societal challenges and ultimately improve the human condition and drive new growth equally.”''

Despite the fact that Microsoft Philanthropies has only been around for a year, the group has already made good on nearly half of their $1 billion contribution. They’ve already given $465 million to more than 71,000 different organizations across the globe.

Apart from monetary investments, Microsoft Philanthropies has also helped to establish networking connectivity at clinics, schools and public spaces in 11 different countries; facilitated access to advanced computer science education on behalf of 225 U.S. high schools; and provided over $30 million in hardware, software and additional cash donations to refugees.

Current and Future Investments by Microsoft

There’s no denying the fact that Microsoft Philanthropies has a lot on their plate, but they’re certainly capable of footing the bill. Moreover, considering the progress they’ve already made, it’s safe to say that they’ll reach their targets sooner rather than later


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