Microsoft Build 2017, Day #1: Announcements

Microsoft Build 2017, Day #1: Announcements

Microsoft made a lot of announcements on the first day of the Build 2017 Conference here at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle. This week was all about developers.

“In a world of near infinite compute power and an exponential growth in data, we are focused on empowering every developer to build applications for this new era of intelligent cloud and intelligent edge,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.

If you’re a developer and have been using Microsoft’s platform, this conference should give you a better overview of the direction the company is heading as well as enhancements of the development tools available to developers.

    Andrea Carl, Director of Commercial Communications.


  • There was a preview of Azure IoT Edge, a technology that extends the intelligence of cloud computing to edge devices. This technology will allow you to search the real world in the same way you search the digital world and help keep data safe and secure while making you more productive. Using just about any existing camera monitoring setup, there were a number of practical scenarios (in construction sites and hospitals) shown in the demo that benefits this.

  • Demo: Microsoft AI for Workplace

  • Microsoft introduced Azure Cosmos DB, the world’s first globally distributed, multi-model database service that guarantees uptime, throughput, and single-digit millisecond latency (at the 99th percentile). It provides large-scale cloud services (think millions of transactions per second) and data-intensive applications to IoT to AI to mobile.

  • Scott Guthrie, EVP of Cloud & Enterprise.

  • General availability of Visual Studio 2017 for Mac, which enables developers to work seamlessly across Windows and Mac environments with full support for mobile, web and cloud workloads, and previews of Docker tools, Azure Functions and Xamarin.IoT support.
  • Microsoft also announced it has added new cognitive services with a total of 29 services for developers. This enables developers to infuse off-the-shelf or custom intelligence capabilities such as vision, speech, language, knowledge and search into their app and bot experiences in any scenario. New services include Bing Custom Search, Custom Vision Service, Custom Decision Service and Video Indexer.

  • Harry Shum, EVP of Microsoft AI & Research

  • A new PowerPoint add-in called Presentation Translator that uses Microsoft’s Translation APIs, was also featured. The plug-in allows for real-time translation to multiple languages during any presentation (read more here).
  • The new Cognitive Services Labs were also launched, enabling developers to experiment with new services, such as a Gesture API, still in the early stages of development.

Laura Jones, senior product marketing manager demonstrating Cortana in the car at Microsoft Build 2017.

There were several more interesting demos as well. One that I really enjoyed is the use of Cortana for work. In addition to Harman Kardon’s Invoke intelligent speaker with Cortana, partnerships were also signed with HP on devices and Intel on reference platforms to deliver Cortana-enabled devices.

As a developer conference, the sessions were pretty packed and heavy with even some live coding happening on the screen.

Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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