HomeWinBuzzer NewsMicrosoft Announces Elimination of Azure Egress Fees, Enhancing Customer Flexibility

Microsoft Announces Elimination of Azure Egress Fees, Enhancing Customer Flexibility

Microsoft stops charging data transfer fees (egress fees) out of Azure, following similar moves by competitors.

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Microsoft has announced it will cease charging customers for data egress fees on its Azure cloud platform. This move aligns Microsoft with its competitors, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google Cloud, who have made similar announcements earlier. Microsoft’s decision is aimed at supporting customer choice, including the freedom to migrate data away from Azure to other cloud providers or on-premises data centers without incurring additional costs. The company emphasizes its commitment to customer flexibility in a recent blog post, stating that Azure now allows free egress for customers transferring their data out of the Azure infrastructure via the internet.

Regulatory Influence and Industry Trends

This policy shift comes ahead of the European Data Act’s enforcement, which targets contractual terms that restrict competition through data lock-in, scheduled to take effect in September 2025. The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority has also investigated egress fees as a competition concern. Analysts perceive these moves as largely driven by regulatory pressures aimed at reducing barriers to cloud service mobility. speaking to The Register, Naveen Chhabra, a principal analyst at Forrester, suggests that the European Data Act is a significant factor behind the hyperscalers’ decision to eliminate data egress charges. While Google announced its waiver of cloud egress fees in January for customers closing their accounts, and AWS followed without requiring account cancellation, Microsoft’s approach also includes a cancellation requirement, indicating a nuanced stance on data mobility.

Market Implications and Customer Impact

Experts argue that the removal of egress fees may have more symbolic than substantive impact, given that only a small segment of customers incurs significant egress fees. The policy change is seen as a marketing strategy that could influence request for proposals (RFPs) and compliance with portability requirements in specific sectors, such as the US Department of Defense. Corey Quinn, chief cloud economist at The Duckbill Group, told The Register that while the policy change may improve perceptions among potential customers, the practical benefits are limited due to the conditions attached to free egress, such as account cancellation. He suggests that the focus on egress fees might not address the core issues of cloud service lock-in and competition.

In conclusion, Microsoft’s decision to eliminate Azure egress fees represents a significant shift in the cloud computing industry, driven by regulatory considerations and competitive dynamics. While the move is welcomed by customers seeking greater flexibility and reduced costs, its actual impact on cloud service usage patterns and provider selection remains to be seen.

SourceMicrosoft
Luke Jones
Luke Jones
Luke has been writing about all things tech for more than five years. He is following Microsoft closely to bring you the latest news about Windows, Office, Azure, Skype, HoloLens and all the rest of their products.