Cloud

Microsoft’s latest Office 365 customer: the U.S. Army

Two blank U.S. Army dog tags

Above: Two blank U.S. Army dog tags

Image Credit: zimand / Shutterstock

Updated at 9:10 PM PT with additional details about the contract

Microsoft just landed another major government customer: the United States Army.

In an contract awarded to Microsoft partner Dell, the U.S. Army agreed to purchase 50,000 licenses of Microsoft Office 365, Microsoft announced in a blog post today. Office 365’s cloud-based work and collaboration apps include secure email, Microsoft’s Lync messaging app, SharePoint collaboration tools, and other Office web apps.

As part of the deal, the Army also agreed to purchase 50,000 licenses of Google Apps, according to ZDNet and CRN.

The user licenses purchased by the Army Program Executive Office for Enterprise Information Systems (PEO-EIS) are available to any Department of Defense agency, service, or partner. Google and Microsoft didn’t reveal the value of the contract, but the PEO-EIS is responsible for managing $3 billion in purchases this fiscal year.

Over a million state, federal, and local government employees are currently using Office 365, noted Curt Kolcun, vice president of U.S. public sector for Microsoft. Some customers include the states of New York, California, and Texas, as well as the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

“Our cloud solutions are becoming the choice across our public sector organizations who recognize the essential importance of security and reliability for their organizations,” said Kolcun.

Microsoft competes with cloud service providers like Google, Amazon Web Services, and IBM SoftLayer for lucrative government contracts. The Redmond, WA-based technology giant recently announced that it is building an Azure cloud for the government, which was deemed secure by the feds in late September.

IBM also provides some cloud services to the Department of Defense and this morning announced a $30 million cloud contract with the U.S. General Services Administration.