The Department of Defense said Tuesday that it has canceled a massive contract for cloud services with Microsoft.
Awarded in 2019, the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) contract could have been worth upwards of $10 billion over 10 years. But the agreement to provide immense storage and computing power to soldiers in the field and commanders at the Pentagon was controversial from the start, with Amazon charging that the contract award was tainted by political considerations in the Trump administration. Former President Donald Trump has engaged in a long-running public feud with Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, who also owns The Washington Post.
The Pentagon said the cancelation was driven by changing technological needs and capabilities, which have emerged during the ongoing litigation over the original contract. “With the shifting technology environment, it has become clear that the JEDI Cloud contract, which has long been delayed, no longer meets the requirements to fill the DoD’s capability gaps,” the Pentagon said in a statement.
What’s next: The Pentagon isn’t giving up on cloud computing and will now focus on what it calls Joint Warfighter Cloud Capability. According to Defense News, the JWCC will operate through a “multi-cloud, multi-vendor indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contract” that is expected to cost billions of dollars, with new agreements expected to be signed by April 2022.