Ben Thompson (paywall):
Nadella’s point is that by virtue of Tier 1 workloads increasingly running in the cloud, Microsoft (and AWS, etc.) can naturally participate and be paid for workloads that it previously didn’t participate in at all; it’s just like SQL Server being something an enterprise might pay for along with SAP’s offering, but now it applies to everything.
There is an even easier way to understand this analogy though: just as Windows was the foundation of user-facing applications previously, the cloud is the foundation of user-facing applications today, and also the entire data and processing layer that sits underneath those applications. It’s a bigger market than Windows, and while Microsoft doesn’t have the same dominant position, the opportunity is so large that it might not matter.
Think about what this means for the market leader, AWS. It’s hard to fathom where cloud computing will stand in 5 or even 10 years time. It’s going to mindboggingly massive. This is the central building block for the modern economy.
Think about the potential breadth of those cloud offerings by starting with counting the current AWS APIs and their growth in numbers over time.
Also, I just had to think of Volkswagen cooperating with AWS to build its “Industrial Cloud”:
Volkswagen Industrial Cloud will combine data of all machines, plants and systems from all the facilities of the Volkswagen Group
Significant productivity improvements at the plants are the objective
Integration of the global Volkswagen supply chain in Industrial Cloud in the long-term – more than 30,000 locations of over 1,500 suppliers and partners throughout the world
Open industry platform: possibly to be used by other partners in the future