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azureThe City of San Jose announced a partnership with Microsoft today to bring its more than 5,000 employees onto the company’s cloud platforms, a big win for the software giant in the heart of Silicon Valley.

San Jose will be using Office 365, Windows Azure and StorSimple as part of the partnership.

“We turned to Office 365 for secured cloud productivity, which in turn will help us lower our total cost of ownership and support a more mobile and connected workforce of the future. The combination of Windows Azure and StorSimple will enable us to streamline storage infrastructure support, which enables our people to make the shift from basic backend operations to citizen engagement and service delivery,” Vijay Sammeta, the city’s Chief Information Officer said in a press release.

It’s surprising that Microsoft won the city’s contract, since Google’s Mountain View headquarters are a scant 20 minutes away from San Jose City Hall. Google and Microsoft have been engaged in a heated battle to win municipalities for their respective cloud offerings.

office365According to Sammeta, Windows Azure is a major benefit of the partnership, and will allow the city to move away from physical infrastructure management.

“Because of the cloud, we now have the opportunity to transform our IT business model so that we no longer have to deal with servers and storage, and instead our employees can take advantage of new tools and efficiency to benefit our broader community,” he said in a press release.

Microsoft’s cloud services are taking California by storm, with San Francisco, the City of Santa Clara and the state among governments using the company’s tools.

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