Read on for some tips on how to apply for Azure China subscription and what its benefits are
Microsoft Azure is a cloud solutions service that is managed by Microsoft’s data centers. It is essentially a SaaS (Software as a Service) and IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) that is designed to help businesses run workloads seamlessly. Microsoft Azure was first made available in China in 2014. There are some key differences between Azure Global and Azure China as well as a difference in applying for an Azure China subscription. Read more below to know how these differences affect you as an enterprise.
Microsoft Azure In China
- Microsoft Azure operates in China by a local service provider, 21Vianet. 21Vianet is an independent Chinese data center service provider that offers Microsoft Azure’s services to enterprises and clients. 21Vianet makes sure that this offering complies with Chinese laws and regulations. Azure was launched in China in 2014 and has been growing at a rapid pace.
21Vianet offers hosting, security, and high-speed internet infrastructure that is needed for the successful deployment and operation of Azure China. Although Azure China is disconnected from Azure Global, there exists the possibility to connect these two using VPNs(Virtual Private Networks).
Availability In China
- Azure China is available in 4 regions of China. These are North, China North 2, East, and China East 2. North and East regions include Beijing and Shanghai, respectively. These were made available in 2014. North 2 and East 2 were made available in 2018. These 4 regions are interconnected and operated through the local partner 21Vianet.
In order to connect Azure China from any of these regions to Azure Global, the use of a VPN is recommended. The client connects Azure China with their on-premises site. They then connect their on-premises site to Azure Global using a VPN.
Core Differences Between Azure Global & Azure China
- The biggest difference between Azure Global and Azure China is the purchase program. Azure Global offers a variety of purchase programs such as self-purchasing online, enterprise agreements, self-purchasing online, and purchasing through a partner. However, Azure China only offers two purchase agreements. These are offline contracts and online purchases.
Another difference between the two is the availability of payment options. Azure Global offers Pay As You Go (PAYG) and Pay In Advance. Azure China, however, offers only one payment method which is Pay In Advance.
- One key benefit of Azure China is that users can access their workloads from anywhere in the world. They do not have to be physically located in China to access their work. Azure China provides various services such as Azure Hybrid Benefit, Azure Stack, Azure China CDN, and China Express Route.
Out of these, Azure Stack is the collection of services and features offered by 21Vianet. Azure China requires you to use China Standard Time while managing workloads and measuring performance.
Chinese Legal Requirements
- For any global business to operate in China, they have to abide by the Chinese laws and regulations. This helps them fully integrate into the Chinese system and avoid fines imposed by the ruling government. Microsoft Azure was the first global cloud service platform to enter the Chinese market and succeed in commercialization. With its local partner, 21Vianet, Azure China made sure that it followed all the Chinese legal requirements.
Microsoft Azure offers data transparency as well as world-class data privacy features to its clients in China. It is considered to be the most trusted platform before it has all the certifications and is fully compliant with Chinese law. Microsoft’s Defender also offers security solutions for enterprises. It is considered reliable both in China as well as in its global markets.
- As mentioned above, Azure China offers two purchase programs for its clients in China. The offline enterprise contract is managed by 21Vianet as an OSPA (Online Service Premium Agreement). This is the preferred purchasing option for large enterprises. For medium and small-sized enterprises, an offline enterprise contract is offered through an indirect partner using the offline OSPA. In this method, the agreement is signed between 21Vianet, the client, and the indirect partner.
The agreement duration for Direct and Indirect OSPA is 3 years. The Microsoft sales team and indirect partner can deliver the price quote. In the case of Direct OSPA, the client is billed by 21Vianet. However, in the case of Indirect OSPA, the client is billed by the indirect partner.
- If you are considering applying for an Azure China subscription, then get in touch with Henson Group today. We are one of the largest and most qualified managed service providers (MSP) for Microsoft Azure. We have a strong presence in the US, Europe, and Asia and have been operating since 2002. Call us today for your free Azure assessment, and let us help you set up your Azure subscription.