Azure Cosmos DB - Database for the AI Era

APPLIES TO: NoSQL MongoDB Cassandra Gremlin Table PostgreSQL

"OpenAI relies on Cosmos DB to dynamically scale their ChatGPT service – one of the fastest-growing consumer apps ever – enabling high reliability and low maintenance." – Satya Nadella, Microsoft chairman and chief executive officer

Today's applications are required to be highly responsive and always online. They must respond in real time to large changes in usage at peak hours, store ever increasing volumes of data, and make this data available to users in milliseconds. To achieve low latency and high availability, instances of these applications need to be deployed in datacenters that are close to their users.

The surge of AI-powered applications created another layer of complexity, because many of these applications integrate a multitude of data stores. For example, some organizations built applications that simultaneously connect to MongoDB, Postgres, Redis, and Gremlin. These databases differ in implementation workflow and operational performances, posing extra complexity for scaling applications.

Azure Cosmos DB simplifies and expedites your application development by being the single database for your operational data needs, from geo-replicated distributed caching to backup to vector indexing and search. It provides the data infrastructure for modern applications like AI agent, digital commerce, Internet of Things, and booking management. It can accommodate all your operational data models, including relational, document, vector, key-value, graph, and table.

An AI database providing industry-leading capabilities...

...for free

Azure Cosmos DB is a fully managed NoSQL, relational, and vector database. It offers single-digit millisecond response times, automatic and instant scalability, along with guaranteed speed at any scale. Business continuity is assured with SLA-backed availability and enterprise-grade security.

App development is faster and more productive thanks to:

  • Turnkey multi-region data distribution anywhere in the world
  • Open source APIs
  • SDKs for popular languages
  • AI database functionalities like integrated vector database or seamless integration with Azure AI Services to support Retrieval Augmented Generation
  • Query Copilot for generating NoSQL queries based on your natural language prompts (preview)

As a fully managed service, Azure Cosmos DB takes database administration off your hands with automatic management, updates, and patching. It also handles capacity management with cost-effective serverless and automatic scaling options that respond to application needs to match capacity with demand.

The following free options are available:

When you decide that Azure Cosmos DB is right for you, you can receive up to 63% discount on Azure Cosmos DB prices through Reserved Capacity.


To learn more about Azure Cosmos DB, join us every Thursday at 1PM Pacific on Azure Cosmos DB Live TV. See the Upcoming session schedule and past episodes.

...for more than just AI apps

Besides AI, Azure Cosmos DB should also be your goto database for a variety of use cases, including retail and marketing, IoT and telematics, gaming, social, and personalization, among others. Azure Cosmos DB is well positioned for solutions that handle massive amounts of data, reads, and writes at a global scale with near-real response times. Azure Cosmos DB's guaranteed high availability, high throughput, low latency, and tunable consistency are huge advantages when building these types of applications.

For what kinds of apps is Azure Cosmos DB a good fit?
  • Flexible Schema for Iterative Development. For example, apps wanting to adopt flexible modern DevOps practices and accelerate feature deployment timelines.
  • Latency sensitive workloads. For example, real-time Personalization.
  • Highly elastic workloads. For example, concert booking platform.
  • High throughput workloads. For example, IoT device state/telemetry.
  • Highly available mission critical workloads. For example, customer-facing Web Apps.
For what kinds of apps is Azure Cosmos DB a poor fit?
  • Analytical workloads (OLAP). For example, interactive, streaming, and batch analytics to enable Data Scientist / Data Analyst scenarios. Consider Microsoft Fabric instead.
  • Highly relational apps. For example, white-label CRM applications. Consider Azure SQL, Azure Database for MySQL, or Azure Database for PostgreSQL instead.

...with unmatched reliability and flexibility

Guaranteed speed at any scale

Gain unparalleled SLA-backed speed and throughput, fast global access, and instant elasticity.

  • Real-time access with fast read and write latencies globally, and throughput and consistency all backed by SLAs
  • Multi-region writes and data distribution to any Azure region with just a button.
  • Independently and elastically scale storage and throughput across any Azure region – even during unpredictable traffic bursts – for unlimited scale worldwide.

Simplified application development

Build fast with open-source APIs, multiple SDKs, schemaless data, and no-ETL analytics over operational data.

  • Deeply integrated with key Azure services used in modern (cloud-native) app development including Azure Functions, IoT Hub, AKS (Azure Kubernetes Service), App Service, and more.
  • Choose from multiple database APIs including the native API for NoSQL, MongoDB, PostgreSQL, Apache Cassandra, Apache Gremlin, and Table.
  • Use Azure Cosmos DB as your unified AI database for data models like relational, document, vector, key-value, graph, and table.
  • Build apps on API for NoSQL using the languages of your choice with SDKs for .NET, Java, Node.js, and Python. Or your choice of drivers for any of the other database APIs.
  • Change feed makes it easy to track and manage changes to database containers and create triggered events with Azure Functions.
  • Azure Cosmos DB's schema-less service automatically indexes all your data, regardless of the data model, to deliver blazing fast queries.

Mission-critical ready

Guarantee business continuity, 99.999% availability, and enterprise-level security for every application.

  • Azure Cosmos DB offers a comprehensive suite of SLAs including industry-leading availability worldwide.
  • Easily distribute data to any Azure region with automatic data replication. Enjoy zero downtime with multi-region writes or RPO 0 when using Strong consistency.
  • Enjoy enterprise-grade encryption-at-rest with self-managed keys.
  • Azure role-based access control keeps your data safe and offers fine-tuned control.

Fully managed and cost-effective

End-to-end database management, with serverless and automatic scaling matching your application and total cost of ownership (TCO) needs.

  • Fully managed database service. Automatic, no touch, maintenance, patching, and updates, saving developers time and money.
  • Cost-effective options for unpredictable or sporadic workloads of any size or scale, enabling developers to get started easily without having to plan or manage capacity.
  • Serverless model offers spiky workloads automatic and responsive service to manage traffic bursts on demand.
  • Autoscale provisioned throughput automatically and instantly scales capacity for unpredictable workloads, while maintaining SLAs.

Azure Synapse Link for Azure Cosmos DB is a cloud-native hybrid transactional and analytical processing (HTAP) capability that enables analytics at near real-time over operational data in Azure Cosmos DB. Azure Synapse Link creates a tight seamless integration between Azure Cosmos DB and Azure Synapse Analytics.

  • Reduced analytics complexity with No ETL jobs to manage.
  • Near real-time insights into your operational data.
  • No effect on operational workloads.
  • Optimized for large-scale analytics workloads.
  • Cost effective.
  • Analytics for locally available, globally distributed, multi-region writes.
  • Native integration with Azure Synapse Analytics.