Microsoft Azure In Australia: How Much Extra You’ll Pay

Microsoft Azure In Australia: How Much Extra You’ll Pay

The good news? Microsoft’s Australian Azure data centres in Sydney and Melbourne are finally open today. The bad news? You’ll pay extra to use them in many cases, and not every service is available at launch. Here’s what you need to know.

The table below shows the per-month pricing for some common Azure services in three locations: Central US, Southeast Asia and Australia East. All prices are in Australian dollars. Note that not everything costs more — SQL Server pricing is consistent, for example.

Service Central US Southeast Asia Australia East
General purpose compute basic 1-core 0.75GB $13.12 $13.12 $18.17
General purpose compute basic 8-core 14GB $462.17 $522.72 $559.05
General purpose compute standard 1-core 0.75GB $15.14 $15.14 $22.21
General purpose compute standard 8-core 14GB $540.88 $540.88 $679.13
SQL Web 1-core $24.22 $24.22 $24.22
SQL Enterprise 16-Core $4,504.63 $4,504.63 $4,504.63
Small Basic Website $56.51 $56.51 $70.64
Medium Basic Website $113.02 $113.02 $141.28
Large Basic Website $225.03 $225.03 $282.55

Similar differences are seem in other services. Basic block storage costs $0.0267 per GB in Australia, but $0.0243 in the US. That’s a small difference, but will add up with large data volumes.

Not every Azure service is available locally — Backup and Site Recovery, for instance, haven’t launched in Australia yet. Not has HDInsight, Machine Learning or DocumentDB.

It’s not surprising that the Australian centres carry a premium; Amazon Web Services also has higher costs for its local data centres. For services that need the higher latency, that will be worth it in some circumstances. Nonetheless, it represents a shift from Azure’s launch policy of worldwide pricing. Note also that only companies with Australian or New Zealand billing addresses can use the Australia region; there’s no option right now for (say) a US company that wants a local cloud presence but doesn’t have operations here.

At the launch event at TechEd in Sydney, Microsoft also announced a new alliance with Telstra and an expansion of its existing partnership with Equinix to create ExpressRoute connections between customer data centres and the new Azure regions. The Equinix partnership will kick off later this year, with Telstra to follow in 2015.


  • Slightly scared about this “Alliance” with Telstra. Will it involve locking Australian partners our of services like they did with Office 365 for 3 years?

    • You would hope MS would have learned its lesson but I doubt it. The fact that Australia was the only country in the world that you couldn’t buy direct from MS in the first instance, then later the only country in the world where you couldn’t buy licences on volume from MS partners, turned a whole lot of partners away from MS.

      Not only this, it gave Telstra the opportunity of taking a lot of small business customers away from MS partners. Not good.

  • People get paid better in Australia, have a good work life balance and public holidays. Probably why it costs more to run it.

    • On the surface your points are valid, but how do you explain the difference between US Central and SE Asia?

      • Because people in those places have lower wages, shitter work life balance and less public holidays. Know anyone that works in the US? I can’t believe the shit I hear sometimes.

        • You’re just making crap up @darren

          Australia is rated 4.9 for average household income whereas the USA is rated 10 –
          Both Australia and USA are rated 5.3 for Work-Life Balance. –
          As for public holidays, there are 11 in VIC this year and there are 11 Federal Holidays in the USA across all 50 states, but I’m sure there are a few more in the individual states.

          I’d say they charge more in Australia because they can and they get away with it – And so they can ship the profits off-shore and pay minimal tax ala MS, Apple, Google etc.

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