Microsoft Azure Cosmos DB: A Globally Distributed, Multi-Model Database Service

Microsoft’s Azure platform is growing in a big way with the company announcing a new DB service that they are calling Azure Cosmos. The new service is launching globally and unlike nearly every previous Microsoft product, this is not in a preview state; the product is now generally available.

This new DB service is designed for everything from IoT to AI to mobile with high levels of performance, fault tolerance and support for nearly every data type. The company claims that this is the first globally distributed, multi-model database service that provides horizontal scale with guaranteed uptime, throughput, and millisecond latency to the 99th percentile that is also backed by SLAs.

Cosmos DB is a schema-free database service that supports platforms like NoSQL APIs and is also capable of auto-indexing all of your data too. Because of this auto-indexing, queries can be performed faster and more accurately as you no longer have to overcome the restraints of complex schema and index management or schema migration in a globally distributed setup.

The goal of Cosmos DB is to allow developers to scale across a wide number of geographic regions with SLAs supporting uptime, performance, latency, and consistency. In short, you can launch an application or service nearly instantly with global support with extremely low latency in nearly any region of the world.

If you are curious about how Microsoft was able to launch this product, not in preview and already available globally, the product started out as Documents DB. I don’t beleive they are doing away with Documents DB service but are rebranding as Cosmos DB; this is the evolution of the underlying technology that powers that solution.

This product from Microsoft appears to be the company’s response to Google’s Spanner technology. But, Microsoft is looking to take its product further than what Google offers with higher levels of financially backed global performance metrics as well as an assurance for their consistency too.

We are still in the early days to see how well Cosmos DB performs in the real world but Microsoft did say that customers like are already using the technology and the platform is processing 100 trillion transactions per day.

Expect to hear a lot more about Cosmos DB at Build 2017 as Microsoft provides more information about how the service operates and the features (and limitations) of the platform.