Microsoft has opened its Azure Marketplace store for cloud-based apps and services to a broader range of enterprise users by enabling those without direct Enterprise Agreement (EA) arrangements to purchase, configure and deploy services from the store.
The Azure Marketplace was launched at Microsoft's TechEd Europe conference last year and is designed to serve as an app store where users can search for, purchase and deploy a wide range of solutions from Microsoft and third-party software vendor partners.
In order to make applications and services available to as many users as possible, Microsoft has now opened access to Azure Marketplace to customers other than those that have EA Direct and web-direct licensing arrangements with the company.
From now on, EA Indirect customers in 86 countries can also purchase, configure and deploy more than 3,000 offerings from Microsoft and leading software providers through the Azure Marketplace, the firm said. These are customers that purchase via a reseller partner instead of direct from Microsoft.
"Today, we are excited to announce a significant step forward by making the Marketplace available to a broader customer audience," said Kyle Wilson, Microsoft senior marketing manager for Azure Marketplace, writing on the Azure Blog.
Solutions offered via the Azure Marketplace are divided into those based on virtual machines, application services, Azure Active Directory applications, software-as-a-service applications and data services.
Customers are typically charged on a metered basis, although Azure Marketplace also supports free applications and allows customers to reuse existing licences if the vendor supports this. However, all purchases are billed separately from Azure cloud services, Microsoft said.
For individual users, access to the Azure Marketplace is managed by their enterprise administrator. Administrators have the ability to enable or disable Marketplace purchases for all subscriptions, save where an Azure Enterprise enrolment includes a subscription to an Azure Marketplace application or service, Microsoft said.
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