As the Windows Azure platform has evolved and grown, greater efficiencies and economies of scale are enabling Microsoft to trim the prices for end-users further making the platform an even more cost-effective way to run reliable, scalable business applications.

This latest release sees the following headline price reductions:

  • Outbound Data Transfer – down to £0.0728 per GB for EU and US data centres and £0.1152 for ROW
  • Service Bus is going to be free for a promotional period whilst the new pricing model is bedded in. It’ll be free until April 2012 and then be £0.0607 per 100 relay-hours and £0.0061 per 10,000 messages
  • Access Controls Service (ACS) is going to have it’s free period extended until the end of November 2012. From December 2012 it’ll be charged at £1.2062 per 100,000 transactions (e.g. 100k sign-ons)
  • SQL Azure Databases can be grown up to 150GB, but the price cap still sits at £303 per DB/Month. This effectively means that you can now utilise a 150GB SQL Azure database at no more cost than you’d pay for a 50GB DB – making larger-scale DBs a much more cost-effective proposition

SQL Azure Federation has also been released with some new Management Portal features to help you administer the federations. In the Acceleration Labs we’ve been helping run throughout Europe in the last couple of months Federation is a feature in great demand – helping you quickly and easily scale-out your databases without limit and helping you manage multi-tenant services and to change your federated scale without having to take the database offline! Look out for more on this topic.

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