Microsoft has signed an almost $2bn contract with the US Department of Defence (DoD).
The contract, which is signed to run for five years, will see Microsoft providing numerous services for the DoD, the US Coast Guard and the intelligence community. Those services include tools support, knowledge base access and Windows customisation, as necessary and if possible.
The Department of Defence stated that Microsoft will not be taking the entire sum (exactly $1.76bn) home at once. Instead, it will be paid for individual task orders. The end date for the contract is January 10, 2024.
This is not the first time Microsoft has worked closely with the DoD. In early December last year, news broke out that the US Government spent $480m on augmented reality goggles, known as HoloLens.
According to The Register (opens in new tab), the total cost of DoD’s work with Microsoft is closer to $5.5bn. The same publication also believes that this award might further antagonise Microsoft’s employees, who have already voiced their concerns about working with the government on military projects.
Back in October, Microsoft’s Brad Smith said the company felt that those who defend the US should have access to the best tech. He also said that Microsoft feels strongly about ethics in AI, but if an employee doesn’t like its approach, the company will help them find a new job somewhere else.
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