When it comes to the cloud, there are two primary competitors, Amazon and Microsoft; Google is building out new data centers to bring its services up to parity with these two juggernauts as well. While Amazon has traditionally been ahead of Azure in terms of features, Microsoft is quickly catching up.
Earlier this year, Microsoft pulled back the curtain on its AWS Lambda competitor known as Functions and now the company is set to take on Glacial storage with Azure Cool storage; Google also offers a competing product called Nearline.
Cold storage is a service that allows for long-term data storage at lower prices than traditional cloud storage. The trade-off for the reduced pricing is that the data is less-available with Amazon saying it can take several hours to make your stored content ready for download.
Microsoft hasn’t given any pricing information or detailed feature reports about how its cold storage service will work but they do say “customers will pay for GBs stored and data access. This is useful for users with data that isn’t regularly accessed, such as older data or backups.”
While cold storage is not a new product for the cloud marketplace, it’s one more item on Microsoft’s checklist to make sure they offer everything that Amazon (and Google) currently provide to their clients. The goal of these long-term data storage services is to make it more cost effective to place your backups (and similar data) in the cloud than host it locally.
Microsoft says that this feature is currently in development but does not offer a date for availability.