Walmart and Microsoft team up in potential challenge to Amazon

GE plans to standardize its Predix solutions on Microsoft Azure

"The world's leading companies run on our cloud, and I'm thrilled to partner with Walmart to accelerate their digital transformation with Microsoft Azure and Microsoft 365".

Today, Microsoft has announced that it is forming a strategic partnership with Walmart, providing the retail corporation a range of its cloud solutions to make shopping an easier process for customers all over the world. Microsoft will be ensuring it all goes as smoothly as possible in a bid to extend the partnership well beyond the first five years.

Back in 2016, Microsoft and GE announced partnership that brought GE's Predix platform for the Industrial Internet to Microsoft Azure.

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Walmart already uses Microsoft for critical applications, but the new agreement establishes a broader set of cloud projects aimed at improving efficiency. There are plans for Walmart and Microsoft Engineers to work together on accessing Walmart's technologies and developing and supporting the company's move to the Microsoft Cloud. Walmart will also leverage Microsoft's IoT solutions to everything from reducing energy usage with its refrigeration and HVAC units to optimizing routes for its supply trucks.

The collaboration makes sense, as it allows Microsoft to stretch its legs in cloud services and machine learning, while Walmart can prepare for the next generation of brick and mortar stores. There's mention of both artificial intelligence and machine learning, marking an expansion of Microsoft services used by Walmart.

"Walmart's commitment to technology is centered around creating incredibly convenient ways for customers to shop and empowering associates to do their best work", Walmart CEO Doug McMillon said in the announcement. In 2017, AWS totaled revenue of $17.5 billion, up 43% year over year and more than double its 2015 sales.



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