Windows Azure SQL Database Marketplace
part of the Real World Windows Azure series, we talked to Francois Bochatay,
CEO and Cofounder at Sobees, about using the Windows Azure platform to deliver the
company's social-media aggregator and the benefits that Windows Azure provides.
Here's what he had to say:
MSDN: Tell us about Sobees and
the services you offer.
Bochatay: Sobees develops software that people
can use to manage all of their social-media information streams with a single
application. Our aggregator is popular among consumers who use applications
such as Twitter and Facebook, and it recently earned a spot as the leading
application on the Yahoo! Mail portal in the United Kingdom and later in other
countries in Europe. We also have a real-time search platform that aggregates
data from multiple search engines.
MSDN: What was the biggest
challenge Sobees faced before implementing the Windows Azure platform?
Bochatay: With the exposure we've received
through Yahoo!, and the potential to acquire millions of new customers, we
weren't confident that the small hosting company we used for our web services
and applications could provide the reliability and scalability we needed. We
have seven employees, and as we grow, we want to spend time developing new
services and focusing on what we do best. We don't want to have to worry about
MSDN: Can you describe the
solution Sobees built with the Windows Azure platform to address your need for
scalability and reliability?
Bochatay: We migrated all of our web
services, applications, and real-time search platform to the Windows Azure
platform in just a few days, creating Web roles in Windows Azure to host the
Microsoft ASP.NET webpages. We also used the Windows Azure platform for our new
business-to-business service, which we are launching in June 2010. The new
service sits on top of the social-networking application networks, Twitter and
Facebook, and some news feeds. With full access to the Twitter and Facebook
application programming interfaces (APIs), Sobees developed its own API and
application to enable businesses to monitor Twitter and Facebook feeds and
manage Twitter posts based on user-set criteria. In addition, we use Microsoft
SQL Azure to store relational data.
MSDN: What makes your solution
Bochatay: One of the great things is
that we're using the new service we developed first for our new
business-to-business application, but then we are going to publish the API to
the Microsoft technology code-named "Dallas." Other developers and companies
can purchase the API for their own needs, and Microsoft takes care of
everything through the subscription service.
MSDN: What are some of the key
benefits Sobees has seen since implementing the Windows Azure platform?
Bochatay: With Windows Azure, we don't
have to worry about scalability at all-even with enormous growth, we can handle
the demand by quickly spinning up new Web roles. Also, we get enterprise-level
service now by hosting at Microsoft datacenters. Microsoft is a name we trust,
it's a name our customers trust, and that kind of reliability is important to
our success. Even better, Windows Azure helps us absorb our growing customer
base without increasing costs. We're paying the same amount today with Windows
Azure that we were previously, but we have 10 times the number of customers
now. To provide the same service to the same number of customers using a
traditional model without Windows Azure would have easily cost three times as
the full story at: http://www.microsoft.com/casestudies/casestudy.aspx?casestudyid=4000007722
more Windows Azure customer success stories, visit: www.windowsazure.com/evidence