Microsoft Ignite 2021 Keynote Takeaways

Microsoft Ignite 2021 (Spring event) kicked off with what has become the usual tradition of a keynote hosted by Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s CEO. This particular keynote was toned down from events past. The poignant keynote focused on the 5 pillars of Microsoft Cloud. If you took only one thing away from his 15 mins, it’s that on-prem is being played off and the cloud is the main event.  


Microsoft Mesh brings MR to reality 

The remainder of the keynote focused on Microsoft Mesh (more in a minute), which from the viewpoint of our focus on the digital workplace and the employee experience, was an unexpected departure from what we’d anticipated. All that being said, the keynote presented many innovative applications of mixed, augmented, and virtual reality (MR / AR / VR) with Microsoft’s announcement of Microsoft Mesh. Most compelling to us was a surgeon’s use of the HoloLens to help with a surgery across the globe. The keynote then continued into more aspirational and transcendent “realities” for applications of MR, VR, and AR.  

Flexible work is here to stay

Following the primary keynote, Jared Spataro then took us through a day-in-the-life of a work-from-home employee taking advantage of Microsoft’s vision for the future of the hybrid workplace. While much of what we saw has been announced already, it was nice to see it in a real-life example. The bottom-line? The future of work is changing, hybrid work will continue to be the norm, and flexible work is here to stay. It’s time to triple-down on teams. 

Bringing it all together 

Our primary takeaway from day one of Ignite 2021 (Spring) is that the cloud is more important than ever before; in fact, as 2020 taught us, it’s a necessity. Mixed reality, powered by the cloud, is not only enabling organizations and individuals to push boundaries, expand their reach, and triumph over barriers, it’s also an innovative way to help disconnected employees feel connected in this new reality of remote work that’s clearly here to stay.  

We look forward to learning more about Microsoft Viva, and its impacts on the future of the Digital Workspace tomorrow. Did we miss an important takeaway from today’s events? Do you see a compelling use for these exciting innovations at your organization? Shout it out in the comments! 

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