- Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said his company will deliver cloud services from data centers in the U.K. by late next year.
- After the Safe Harbor Agreement was struck down by the EU's top court last month, both AWS and Microsoft are looking for more datacenter capacity in Europe.
- The datacenter announcements seem to indicate the two companies are concerned about the EU’s ability to restrict the export of citizens' personal information.
Citizens' personal information is subject to strict data protection laws in the EU. Exports of data to the U.S. had been simplified by the Safe Harbour Agreement until that agreement was struck down last month.
In theory, neither Microsoft nor AWS should be overly concerned by the discontinuance of Safe Harbour, because they have both incorporated model contract clauses into their agreements with customers, and those clauses have received the approval of European data protection registrars. The two companies are instead likely aiming primarily to win local customers.
In addition to Azure and Office 365, Microsoft said it plans to host its Dynamics CRM Online service in the new U.K. data centers as well.