Microsoft has announced that it will provide its Live@edu communication and collaboration software to more than 7 million students and half a million teachers through a deal with the AICTE.
The company has been forced to branch out into the fast-growing world of cloud computing due to intense competition from the likes of Google.
The service, which Microsoft is providing for free as part of its education initiative, includes email, Office Web applications, instant messaging and storage.
For users, cloud computing is inexpensive and simple, because it removes the need to spend time and money on installing software and managing servers. Large government departments are prime targets for vendors such as Microsoft and Google.