It’s time to learn another new set of acronyms.
Effective today, Microsoft’s as-a-service brand is changing names again. As recently as last week, the product’s name had been changed from Windows Azure to Microsoft Azure, but industry observers noted that Microsoft’s web pages actually referred to a different name – Microsoft Cloud.
“Our research found that the primary barrier to Azz..As..Accu..cloud adoption was pronounciation,” said an inside source. “No one could say the damn word correctly, and nobody wanted to look stupid, so they just recommended Amazon Web Services instead.”
Thus the new name, Microsoft Cloud – but it ran into more branding problems right away, said the source. “We tried to trademark our virtual machines and databases, but you-know-who had a problem with our names, MC-Compute and MC-Database. People kept calling them McCompute and McDatabase. It probably didn’t help that our combination program was called the Value Menu.”
Enter the New Brand: Microsoft Pale Blue
Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s new CEO, picked the name himself. “Microsoft Pale Blue captures the wide-open possibilities of the empty sky. Everybody knows that blue is the best color for logos, so why not take it to the next level? Let’s use the color name as our brand.”
“Microsoft has learned to play to their core strength – product rebranding,” said industry analyst Anita Bath. “Nobody goes through product names like they do. Metro, Vista, Zune, PowerWhatever, Xbone, you name it, this is a company that understands brands are meaningless.”
“We’re also announcing new datacenters – or as we call them, Pale Blue Regions – in China, North Korea, and Iran,” said Microsoft spokesperson Pat McCann. “We don’t believe politics should stop people from having access to the best technology, and we’re committed to aggressively growing our regions. Anytime we see new cloud demand, we’ll open a PBR.”
Today’s announcements did not include any numbers about customers or revenues, however, and questions remain. A few European reporters at today’s announcement asked Nadella if he thought security concerns around Microsoft reading customer data or NSA back doors might be barriers to cloud adoption. Nadella paused for a moment, then said, “No, no way. That can’t be it. It’s gotta be the brand name.”