Web3 is certainly turning the heads of the big players in the tech industry. Mega tech corporations like Google and Amazon have already ventured into the space by building a dedicated Web3 team. And although Microsoft has been questioning its position in the crypto world, this has not stopped the multinational tech company from having a spot amongst the big boys of the tech sphere. The FOMO is starting to show as Microsoft blockchain node services emerge as a partnership with Ankr Network.
Microsoft Blockchain Node Service
Last month, the tech giant Microsoft announced its partnership with Ankr Network, the Web3 infrastructure firm, to provide enterprise-level blockchain node hosting services on the Azure cloud marketplace.
The partnership will facilitate the blockchain solution as it takes the knowledge of blockchain infrastructure from Ankr and combines it with Microsoft’s Azure platform for easy purchase. This way, developers and organizations will have secure access to blockchain data.
Chandler Song, Ankr’s co-founder, stated that the Microsoft partnership would be a huge step in the growth of the digital economy.
He also stated that “The partnership, while an incredible milestone for Ankr, is also a key indicator of how far the decentralized web has come in integrating with the crucial players in every layer of web systems. The end result will be an era of extremely prolific building for blockchain-based applications from new Web3 projects. As well as large enterprises entering the space.”
As it’s already known, Web3 is built on the ever-growing decentralized technology that is the blockchain. Blockchain technology is based on a peer-to-peer distributed network that is operated by nodes. Deploying a node is not that easy, and many blockchain solutions have emerged to facilitate enterprises’ deployment of blockchain nodes.
The Azure platform is a public computing platform that provides various services such as analytics, storage, and networking. Thus, Microsoft’s Azure cloud combined with Ankr’s infrastructure will allow clients to optimize for speed and easily track the performance of nodes across 19 compatible blockchains. Including Ethereum, BNB Smart Chain, Polkadot, Near, and many more.
Ankr’s RPC nodes allow Dapps to communicate with blockchains. In addition, customers can choose a fully managed node hosting option where they can choose the node’s memory, bandwidth, and geographic location.
Is Microsoft Confused About Web3?
Microsoft’s partnership might be coming as a fear of being behind. Google Cloud has already provided Google Blockchain Node Engine. Which is a fully managed node hosting service that decreases the time-consuming node operations. However, Microsoft wasn’t always keen on jumping on the Web3 wagon.
Last December, Microsoft updated its Universal License Terms for Online Services to “clarify that mining cryptocurrency is prohibited without prior Microsoft approval.” The tech giant claimed that crypto mining could disrupt online services. As well as stating that users are more likely to face cyber attacks and fraud.
In addition, Microsoft laid off its Industrial Metaverse core team, which is around 100 workers. The cut was a part of Microsoft’s reduction of 10,000 employees, about 5% of the workforce. So, considering the uncertainties surrounding the metaverse, the tech company sacrificed the whole Web3 team.
Gerald Daniels, associate professor of economics at Howard University states that Microsoft’s decision was reasonable.
“Now that the cost of borrowing is higher, tech firms like Microsoft and businesses, in general, will likely have to be more cautious with their investments and take on less risk.”
However, Microsoft recently released a crypto wallet feature on its Edge Bowser that facilitates the trade of cryptocurrency for users.
So, is Microsoft pro-crypto or against it? It is clear that Microsoft is trying to catch up with the trend as more companies venture into the space. The crypto-wallet feature and the partnership with Ankr for blockchain node hosting services marks the beginning of Microsoft’s Web3 journey. We’ll see what the tech giant might bring to the table as time goes on.