Microsoft is working with Ripple to add a pure play transactional financial services angle to its recently released blockchain-as-a-service (BaaS) toolkit.
Microsoft announced in October plans to provide a blockchain platform on its Azure cloud using Ethereum. The idea is to create a "fail fast and cheap" ecosystem to mix and match technologies in a Dev-Test sandbox for customers experimenting with blockchain technologies.
Under the plans, customers will be able to evaluate different implementations, performance test and build prototypes in a one-click environment, and make it available to end-users for refinement and performance testing.
In an update on the programme, Marley Gray, Microsoft's director of technology strategy for US financial services, says several packages are in the pipeline with reference implementations and samples specific to financial services, via the adoption of C++ Ethereum and Ethereum on Windows Server.
He says Azure BaaS is already operating a validating node for the benefit of bank users on the Ripple concensus network.
Further to this, he says Microsoft would like to onboard Ripple's recently introduced Interldger Protocol, which enables transactions between distributed and traditional bank ledgers, as part of the package.
Says Gray: "We’re exploring how the Interledger Protocol can be used by the Azure enterprise and developer community to enable new and novel use cases within Microsoft's blockchain as a service offering."