Microsoft launches a solution to secure IoT in the cloud. Called Azure Sphere, it relies on a custom operating system based on Linux. A first, out of Windows, for the giant of Redmond.

It’s been a while since the Redmond giant has forged strong ties with Linux communities in several areas, especially since its Cloud turnaround and the advent of Azure which handles many distributions.

With Azure Sphere, Microsoft is taking a new step towards Linux, this time oriented IoT and its “9 billion new objects connected each year” insists Galen Hunt, in charge of the project.

The solution consists of a microcontroller (MCU) for computing, the Azure Sphere Security Service to monitor the exchanges between connected objects, and Azure Sphere OS, a custom operating system based on Linux.

The first Azure Sphere chip, the MT3620, will be delivered by the Taiwanese manufacturer and marketed this year. Others should follow ensures Microsoft.

Accessible in private beta, the development tools for Visual Studio will be open to all by mid-2018.

The first devices equipped with “compatible” Azure Sphere microcontrollers are expected by the end of the year.