Microsoft's IoT-Friendly Azure Event Grid Service Goes Live

The service enables the development of serverless applications that react to events from IoT and mobile devices.

Azure IoT Events Service

Azure Event Grid, an event-routing service that enables businesses to build serverless and event-based applications, is generally available, announced Corey Sanders, director of Compute at Microsoft Azure, on Jan. 30.

Riding on intensifying enterprise demand for modular and serverless applications that can automate business processes and workflows, and taking a publish/subscribe approach to messaging, the service made its debut in August 2017.

Developers can use Azure Event Grid to build and deploy serverless applications that take action on inputs from mobile apps, Internet of Things (IoT) devices, and in the case of Microsoft's implementation, third-party services. "Azure Event Grid is the first of its kind, enabling applications and services to subscribe to all the events they need to handle whether they come from Azure services or from other parts of the same application," blogged Sanders.

"These events are delivered through push semantics, simplifying your code and reducing your resource consumption," explained Sanders. "You no longer need to continuously poll for changes and you only pay per event," he added, noting that the service can automatically scale to handle the demands of millions of events per second.

Coinciding with the service's commercial launch, Microsoft also released new Event Grid Management SDKs that help developers create, update and delete grid subscriptions and topics. Currently, SDKs are available for .NET, Node.js and Python. Go, Java and Ruby support is in the works. A new Publish SDK that allows developers to post events, is available for .NET, with Go, Java, Node.js and Ruby support to follow.

Since its debut last summer, Microsoft has added event publishing support for Azure General Purpose Storage and Azure IoT Hub. Previously, it supported Azure Blob Storage, Resource Groups, Azure Subscriptions, Event Hubs and Custom Topics as event publishers. The company's telemetry-ingestion service, Event Hubs, has been added as an event handler, joining Azure Functions, Logic Apps, Azure Automation and WebHooks.

Internally, Microsoft's Supply Chain Engineering division is using Azure Event Grid in its serverless pipeline, revealed Sanders. Early customers include Outotec, a Finnish industrial design and consulting firm, and Paycor, a provider of human resources and payroll software.

Azure Event Grid is available in several Azure cloud data center regions, including California, Virginia, Ireland and Hong Kong. In the U.S., the service costs 60 cents per every million events. Each month, the first 100,000 events are free.

While Azure Event Grid was wending its way toward general availability, Amazon Web Services (AWS) added new capabilities to its equivalent product, Simple Notification Service (SNS).

In November 2017, the company added a feature that allows for topic- and attribute-based filtering. "This new feature simplifies the pub/sub messaging architecture by offloading the filtering logic from subscribers, as well as the routing logic from publishers, to SNS," wrote AWS representatives in a blog post.

Pedro Hernandez

Pedro Hernandez

Pedro Hernandez is a contributor to eWEEK and the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals. Previously, he served as a managing editor for the Internet.com network of...