Currently we as BizTalk Wiki Ninja’s are assembling and creating an eBook containing a subset of all the articles published on the TechNet Wiki. As an introduction to this eBook I have been asked to write a foreword. In this foreword I will look into the future from my perspective.

BizTalk Server has been around for over thirteen years and is matured to a full featured on premise enterprise integration product providing a large set of adapters to various LOB-systems, mainframe, protocols, databases, and Windows Azure. Currently its ninth release is out: BizTalk Server 2013 R2.

BizTalk Server has over 13000 customers worldwide with hotspots in the US, Europe, India and Australia. On average you could say a 1000 customers a year. An amazing number and that includes fortune 100 enterprises in different branches like aviation, energy, banking, insurance and healthcare. Community wise BizTalk has a loyal number of followers, contributors and dedicated MVP’s.

Product focused summits and events take place globally in the US, Europe and at the end of this month even in Australia. These events are highly appreciated and draw a great number of people. And the dedication is not limited to these events. There are numerous BizTalk focused blogs found on the internet and there is the TechNet Wiki containing hundreds of articles. Some of them, which you will find in the soon to be released BizTalk Server eBook.

The road ahead of us is another major release of BizTalk followed by a minor release in conjunction with the releases of BizTalk Service. BizTalk Service is an integration service in Windows Azure that brings some similar features as BizTalk Server. You can connect, route and transform systems, (cloud) services and mobile applications with BizTalk Service. This service was launched last year November and is almost a year available with features added every three months. The release cadence is much faster than for on premise BizTalk Server.

Over next two years we will see an increase of integration demands for enterprises with emerging cloud, mobile devices and the Internet of Things. Microsoft will invest in both BizTalk Server and BizTalk Service to provide its customers a compelling set of features. The company will ultimately thrive for symmetry of features sets for both technologies.

Steef-Jan Wiggers (Blog, Wiki, Twitter, Profile)