Microsoft Ignite 2020 Announces New Initiatives

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Microsoft recently concluded its Ignite 2020 conference, a global digital event that brought together its customer, partner and developer community from across the world. A series of new innovations were announced that will serve to address the developing needs of businesses in a rapidly evolving world, where technology has become vital to address challenges.

Those joining experienced the latest that Microsoft has to offer across its cloud, developer, security, productivity and collaboration tools, and a look at what’s next in technology. A special virtual version of this year’s event utilised Microsoft Teams for media, experts and spokespeople to log in virtually.

The keynote speech was Microsoft Ignite 2020: Empowering businesses to build resilience for today and what’s ahead, by Frank X. Shaw, Corporate Vice President, Communications at Microsoft, who said: “Every industry is reimagining how it uses technology to transform business, with multiple years’ worth of digital transformation happen in a matter of months because of the COVID-19 impact.”

Frank X. Shaw continued. “Our customers response has been an inspiration, as they adopt new technologies to chart a path forward, building their own unique capabilities and reimagining what’s possible. At Microsoft Ignite 2020, we’re sharing how we’re empowering resilience building with a set of new tools and services, anchored in trust.”

A series of important announcements were made at the event, including new Microsoft Teams features to make meetings better, such as new Together mode scenes and custom layouts that make presented content more dynamic. Enhancements to Microsoft Teams Rooms also include devices that support health and safety guidelines including Touchless meeting experiences and voice assistance.

The first industry-specific cloud, Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare, was announced as generally available for the end of October. The comprehensive cloud enables healthcare customers and partners to deliver better experiences, insights and care to people worldwide.

A new first-party voice channel was outlined for Dynamics 365 Customer Service, that will provide a seamless, end-to-end customer service experience within delivering consistent, connected support across all channels. Azure Communications Services is launched to deliver enterprise-grade communication experiences across devices and platforms, using the same secure platform that powers Microsoft Teams.

In response to the evolving and new demands placed on developers in the current climate, low code updates in Power Platform and Azure are being activated for professional developers – enabling rapid creation of custom apps, bots and workflows with Azure APIM and GitHub integration. A preview of Power Automate Desktop is now available, with a desktop automation option for citizen developers and business users.

To boost security, compliance and identity for customers in transitional times and in the face of growing security threats, updates were shared for both Azure and Microsoft 365. These include enhanced protection changes to Microsoft Defender, and a Compliance Manager to help customers address increasing regulations.

The Ignite 2020 conference travels around the world with experts, insights and training tailored to markets, providing solutions, migration and management of infrastructure and opportunities to connect with industry leaders and peers.

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