Azure Location Based Services in Preview Launched

Microsoft has added native location capabilities to the Azure public cloud.

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Azure Location Based Services (LBS) - hero

The Public Preview availability of Azure Location Based Services (LBS) announced Tuesday a new cloud offering to power "Location of Things," is basically a portfolio of geospatial service APIs, which are natively integrated into Azure, so developers, enterprises and ISVs can create location aware apps and IoT, mobility, logistics and asset tracking solutions.

"Azure LBS has a robust set of geospatial services atop a global geographical data that can better connect smart cities, infrastructure and IoT solutions, and empower industrial transformation, from manufacturing to retail to automotive – and everything in between," writes Microsoft.

In partnership with TomTom, the feature will become available in early December and will also provide enterprises with privacy, data sovereignty, compliance, scale and simplicity.

The public preview currently comprises of five distinct REST services, that include: Render (for maps), Route (for directions), Search, Time Zones and Traffic, and a JavaScript Map Control.

In this screenshot is a Azure Map Control:

Azure Map Control

Microsoft and SAP SE on Monday, expanded partnership to give customers joint cloud capabilities and a trusted road map.

With this partnership, SAP's privately managed cloud service, "SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud" on Azure will allow customers to run SAP S/4HANA in a secure, managed cloud. Additionally, Microsoft will also deploy SAP S/4HANA on Azure to run its internal finance processes, and SAP will move its key internal business critical systems to Azure.

Finally, SAP Ariba is currently utilizing Azure and is exploring further use within its procurement applications. Together, SAP and Microsoft will help companies make the most of running SAP applications in the cloud.

In addition, as part of the future of urban mobility, Microsoft also announced expansion of an open-source research project called "AirSim," that tests the safety of artificial intelligence (AI) systems.

AirSim provides realistic environments, vehicle dynamics and sensing for how autonomous vehicles that use AI can operate safely in the open world.

Another project launched called, "Vision Zero" along with companies such as Open Data Nation (ODN) will help to reduce traffic fatalities and injuries.

Microsoft notes it has also invested in technologies that can help create inclusiveness between governments and citizens, and in collaboration with G3ict and World Enabled alos recently launched the "Smart Cities for All Toolkit."