Utter the phrase "cloud computing" and you risk putting someone to sleep, but apparently Microsoft cares about the business so much, they're launching their own service to rival Amazon's. 

The online retailer is known throughout the tech world for its "industrial-strength servers and beefy Internet connections," writes The Times, so at a time when everything is going online, Microsoft is feeling out of the loop. 

Microsoft's president of the server and tools division, Satya Nadella, is desperate to bring his company up to speed, so this year they'll introduce something called the Elastic Compute Cloud, which will commit to matching Amazon's prices. Whether it works will be anyone's guess, as Amazon already has a leg up in terms of timing and a vast array of services that appeal to tech startups like Foursquare and Instagram. 

As James Staten, an analyst at Forrester Research, put it: "They mistimed the market for sure." 

[via The New York Times]