Twilio and Microsoft make deal on cloud comms in Azure

News James Stirling May 2, 2012

Developers get 1,000 free text messages and minutes as sweetener.

Cloud-based telephony start-up Twilio has signed a deal with Microsoft to offer its APIs to developers working on Microsoft’s Windows Azure platform.

The deal covers the Twilio’s voice and messaging services. As a sweetener, Twilio is offering developers a credit of 1,000 free text messages of inbound voice minutes when they sign up.

Developers working on apps needing features such as interactive voice response, mobile app distribution via SMS, call automation or two-factor authentication, can use Twilio's REST API to access global telecommunications networks. Microsoft said that by joining the Windows Azure ecosystem, Twilio has made it “easier than ever for Windows Azure developers to deploy voice and text messaging apps.”

“We've seen the innovation happening around Twilio, and we want to make it as easy as possible for Windows Azure developers to build great apps that use Twilio’s communications platform and take advantage of Windows Azure’s scalability, reliability and flexibility,” said Scott Guthrie, corporate vice president at Microsoft.

Twilio is unlike Skype as it is cloud-based and does not require end users to download and install applications to use the service.

Twilio chief executive Jeff Lawson said that using his company’s APIs applications running on Windows Azure, “developers can bring their voice and SMS apps to market and scale their businesses faster than ever—we can't wait to see what developers build with Twilio on Windows Azure."

Twilio’s VoIP API is already used by the likes of eBay and Airbnb to include voice and text services into their consumer apps.