Microsoft will launch an intellectual property protection program for its Azure customers in China on Oct 1, the technology giant announced in Shanghai on Tuesday.
In February, Microsoft became the first technology company to offer uncapped indemnification coverage to its Microsoft Azure cloud customers. It now offers customers protection against patent trolling with its collection of 10,000 legal patents, covering 42 countries and regions worldwide.
Jason Zander, corporate vice-president of Microsoft, said the purpose of bringing Azure IP protection program in China is to make sure that its Azure cloud partners, users and developers can accelerate their innovation on cloud computing.
Wind turbine technologies developer Envision Energy based in Jiangsu province is one of the domestic companies to set up an Internet-of-Things platform on Azure cloud. The company's senior manager Pan Yihong said the IP protection program will help them to focus on technology innovation and avoid unnecessary waste.
Xia Yiping, chief technology officer of bike-sharing company Mobike, said the technology and legal protection provided by Microsoft can largely reduce risks related to IP since Mobike has started businesses in seven overseas markets.
According to global online market intelligence platform IPlytics, the number of IP lawsuits related to cloud products has surged by 700 percent since 2012 in the United States. A similar trend can also be noticed in China, as the number of cloud products IP lawsuits jumped by 158 percent between 2011 and 2016.
Microsoft Azure entered the Chinese market in March 2014, with its services operated by Beijing-based carrier-neutral internet data center service provider 21Vianet.