StarHub, MS join hands for cloud

Melissa Chua
Daily News
Singapore’s StarHub is going head-on with rival SingTel in the enterprise cloud via a syndication partnership with Microsoft.
The agreement will see StarHub, the nation's second-largest operator, go-to-market with Microsoft’s Office 365 cloud productivity suite in Singapore. A public beta for the service was announced earlier this week.
The partnership is the second of its kind in Asia – a similar agreement was forged between Telstra and Microsoft in Australia.
Microsoft has laid down capital expenditure for its own data center in Singapore, while StarHub will provide connectivity between Microsoft’s data center and its business broadband customers signed up to the service.
Both firms are working to ensure Microsoft’s existing 230 cloud customers in Singapore migrate to Office 365 when the service goes commercial later this year. The service is expected to cost customers between $6 - $27 per user, per month, dependent on configuration.
“Having the telco as a single point of contact gives customers peace of mind,” said Tan Tong Hai, StarHub’s chief operating officer, adding customers could pick cable broadband or fiber as choice of connectivity.
Tan told Telecom Asia that the service’s advantage over SingTel’s ONEOffice suite, launched in collaboration in Google, lay in customers’ familiarity with Microsoft’s products. “It’s easier to continue with something you’re familiar with than switch to something they’ve never used before.”