Microsoft teams with big banks to speed development of financial technology

Microsoft has forged a partnership with R3, a consortium of 43 financial institutions, to help make online money transfers and payments faster and more secure using blockchain technologies.

Blockchains, or online ledgers used for recording digital transactions, are touted as tamper resistant but were originally developed outside of the traditional banking system. This newer technology has banks scrambling to find the right technological fit

At Microsoft’s inaugural Envision conference for business leaders yesterday in New Orleans, CEO Satya Nadella told the crowd that R3 was using blockchain technology available on Microsoft Azure. Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) will be a preferred vendor, providing “blockchain as a service,” which will let financial institutions access the technology via the cloud. It will also provide services and staff to help R3 to develop new financial products using the blockchain technology.

Amazon’s AWS (Nasdaq: AMZN), Google (Nasdaq: Goog) and IBM(NYSE: IBM) also are racing to find their own answer to blockchain technology.

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