Amazon Web Services (AWS) has built a reputation for providing inexpensive compute resources in the cloud. At the re:Invent 2014 conference this week, AWS unfurled a raft of advanced services that collectively make it simpler to build and deploy applications on AWS than just about anywhere else at price/performance levels that are difficult for anyone to match.
Among the new AWS services are:
- Free EC2 Container Service based on Docker containers that eliminates the overhead associated with deploying containers across multiple availability zones. The AWS EC2 Container Service is also integrated with the Docker Hub container registry service.
- An event-driven service called AWS Lambda that eliminates the need for developers to fire up a stack of software infrastructure to integrate components of an application. The AWS Lambda service eliminates the need to write “glue code” while masking any of the infrastructure management complexity associated with writing these types of applications from the developer. The service is free for up to 3.2 million executions per month.
- A new C4 instance of its EC2 compute service based on an implementation of an Intel Xeon E5 v3 processor that Intel has specifically optimized for the AWS environment.
- A preview of an instance of a MySQL database, dubbed Aurora, which has been optimized for the AWS cloud in a way that runs five times faster than a version of the open source database running on premise.
- A range of CodeDeploy application development and lifecycle management services that it internally developed for AWS customers.
- New security and governance tools, including an encryption key management service, which addresses a variety of cloud compliance challenges.
Speaking at re:Invent, AWS CTO Werner Vogels says the ultimate goal is to create a public cloud environment that makes it easier for organizations to spin up a wide variety of applications faster than ever. To that end, AWS is clearly moving beyond being a low-cost provider of public cloud services. Investments in advanced cloud services mean that AWS is becoming a provider of an enterprise IT cloud experience that most internal IT organizations won’t be able to match.
Of course, the degree to which other cloud service providers can provide similar capabilities remains to be seen. But for right now at least, it looks like most of them will be playing catch up with AWS for quite some time.