In a press note, Microsoft announced that it will retire Azure Blockchain Service on 10th Sep 2021 and urged customers to migrate ledger data to an alternative offering such as Quorum Blockchain Service from ConsenSys.
Earlier this week, ConsesSys announced its collaboration with Microsoft to offer Azure customers and business partners an easy path to building multi-cloud Ethereum-based managed blockchain services.
Microsoft listed a few reasons for recommending the Quorum Blockchain Service and a guide to do the migration. According to the post, Quorum has no extra management overhead compared to its Azure Blockchain Service. Additionally, users would not have to learn anything new. This is because the Quorum Blockchain uses an enhanced version of the technology used in the Azure Blockchain.
Microsoft Azure’s Blockchain-as-a-Service (BaaS) was started back in 2015. In January 2016, Microsoft offered a preview of a lab environment in Azure’s DevTest Labs. This demonstrated that Blockchain-related services and partners could decouple the Blockchain technology from virtual machines. In 2019, it launched the fully managed service Azure Blockchain Service, for the formation, management, and governance of consortium blockchain networks.
Microsoft’s plan for the Azure BaaS was to offer a certified blockchain marketplace. Since then, it focused more on adding blockchain partners, rather than trying to pick potential winners.
There is no clear reason given by Microsoft for shutting down the service.