Microsoft plans to build up to 100 data centres per year

30 April 2021 | Antony Savvas

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Microsoft is planning to spend billions of dollars in building 50 to 100 new data centres every year, as it expands its Microsoft Azure cloud footprint.

The company says it will move its data centre presence into ten new countries by the end of this year.

Microsoft unveiled its turbo data centre building target during the launch of its “immersive data centre virtual tour experience”, an online tour of a simulated Microsoft data centre that promotes the firm's investments in security, sustainability, reliability and innovation.

On the the virtual data centre experience, Noelle Walsh, a Microsoft corporate vice president who leads the team that builds and operates the company’s cloud infrastructure, said: “It makes the cloud real for people and less high-tech and highfalutin.”

On the future building programme she confirmed that Microsoft is “on pace to build between 50 and 100 new data centres each year for the foreseeable future”.

Although she didn't confirm the locations of the company's planned data centres going forward, Microsoft has been quickly ramping up its data centre plans lately, as it seeks to get closer to the capacity offered by public cloud market share leader Amazon Web Services.

Microsoft recently announced a $1 billion data centre and digital learning programme in Malaysia, and it is building new facilities in Georgia and Texas in the US, as well as in Israel.

It currently operates more than 200 data centres. Its live facilities (like the one pictured) and the ones it is currently building span about 35 countries.