Microsoft makes changes to Teams, Xbox Live as its cloud services usage grows by 775%

Microsoft is working to optimise its key cloud services which are under immense stress with people working from home due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Microsoft is also in talks with the ISPs around the world to augment the capacity.
Microsoft is also in talks with the ISPs around the world to augment the capacity.

Microsoft reported a whopping 775% surge in usage of its cloud services where the governments have enforced social distancing or restrictions. Its top services include Xbox Live gaming platform, Teams collaboration tool, and Windows Virtual Desktop. The growth in usage has also forced Microsoft to make some important changes to these platforms to reduce the stress on telecommunications infrastructure.

"Although the majority of deployments still succeed, (so we encourage any customers experiencing allocation failures to retry deployments), we have a process in place to ensure that customers that encounter repeated issues receive relevant mitigation options. We treat these short-term allocation shortfalls as a service incident and we send targeted updates and mitigation guidance to impacted customers via Azure Service Health—as per our standard process for any known platform issues," said Microsoft in a blog post.

Xbox Live

Is Xbox Live putting a strain on Microsoft's infrastructure? The company said it's monitoring the usage trends and is taking steps accordingly. Microsoft is also in talks with the ISPs around the world to augment the capacity.

"We're actively monitoring performance and usage trends to ensure we're optimizing services for gamers worldwide. At the same time, we're taking proactive steps to plan for high-usage periods, which includes taking prudent measures with our publishing partners to deliver higher-bandwidth activities like game updates during off-peak hours," said Microsoft on Xbox Live.

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Microsoft Teams' usage has grown worldwide as more governments around the world enforced the Covid-19 lockdown. The professional collaboration tool is also being widely used for educational purposes. The company reported a surged 44 million daily active users. Microsoft Teams had witnessed 900 million meetings and calling minutes in just seven days, revealed the company last week.

In order to optimise the experience of the platform, the company is now making some "temporary adjustments" to a few "non-essential capabilities." Microsoft is hopeful these changes won't impact users' experience.

The changes include things like "how often we check for user presence, the interval in which we show when the other party is typing, and video resolution. These adjustments do not have significant impact on our end users' daily experiences," said Microsoft.