In 2009, the value of goods sold on eBay was nearly $60 billion, which translates into approximately $2,000 in sales every second. Maintaining the massive technical infrastructure needed to support these sales volumes means eBay is always looking for ways to drive IT efficiencies and service improvements. In 2010, eBay and Microsoft began working with Avanade and Accenture to explore how the Windows Azure platform might enable eBay to deploy and scale applications more quickly and cost effectively in eBay's highly customized, Java-based environment.
The project focused on migrating eBay's Apple iPad marketplace site to Windows Azure. The iPad site was selected because it allowed eBay to quickly experiment with sizeable demand and highly customized pages without the need to invest in additional infrastructure costs. Accenture and Avanade worked with Microsoft technical experts and a small team of eBay infrastructure personnel to complete the project.
The outcomes for eBay were threefold:
- The project confirmed that eBay could provision application development services and host marketplace applications on the public cloud.
- Through the ipad.ebay.com marketplace, eBay experienced first-hand, the platform's flexibility, scalability, cost advantages and speed to market.
- The project provided valuable insights into how cloud computing could be incorporated into eBay's long-term infrastructure vision to drive significant cost savings and power new customer experiences quickly and efficiently.