Microsoft and Wal-Mart are teaming up to get a strategic partnership that can take on rival Amazon in both technology and retail. Wal-Mart is announcing today, in Microsoft’s Inspire partner conference, that it is partnering with Microsoft to utilize the organization’s cloud services. The 5 year deal will see Walmart usage Azure and Microsoft 365 through the business, alongside new jobs oriented toward machine learning, artificial intelligence, and data systems. Wal-Mart is Amazon’s largest retail competitor, also Microsoft is Amazon’s biggest cloud solutions rival. That competition is not lost on Microsoft Chief executive officer Satya Nadella, that hinted in an interview with The Wall Street Journal that it is absolutely core to this, brand new partnership.

How do we get more leverage, because two organizations that have depth and breadth and investment to be able to outrun our respective competition, states Nadella. Whilst the technology partnership will clearly benefit both businesses, in addition, it comes just weeks after the reports indicated Microsoft is working on its rival Amazon Go technologies for cashier free stores. Microsoft is reportedly in discussions with Walmart with this technology, and also the software manufacturer has hired a pc vision expert from Amazon. Amazon’s Go Shop in Seattle uses multiple cameras and sensors which utilize computer vision algorithms to discover what items you are taking out from the store so you are automatically billed. Microsoft is reportedly experimenting with attaching cameras to shopping carts to track items. Both Wal-Mart and Microsoft don’t mention too a lot of the future facing portions of the strategic deal, and it’s largely timed for Microsoft’s large partners conference in Las Vegas this week. But this new deal might be a distinctive test ground for Microsoft’s bigger AI aspirations and some future plans it’s to push other retailers to utilize its own assortment of cloud services.