Amazon Web Services is just past its eighth birthday, but the cloud-computing giant has maintained an accelerated pace of services and features that have a bevy of rivals gunning for it. AWS' response is to keep on the gas on the product and pricing fronts.
During Wednesday's AWS Summit 2014 keynote, Andy Jassy, head of the AWS business and the Technology Infrastructure organization for Amazon.com, touted AWS' computing power and outlined new service offerings, upgrades and his take on the top four reasons why businesses are rapidly making the move to the cloud.
In the end, the race on cloud infrastructure pricing is headed to zero. AWS apparently plans to outrun Google there first.
Among the more notable announcements was word that AWS' desktop virtualization platform WorkSpaces has moved out of limited testing and is now openly available to all AWS customers. Jassy said WorkSpaces is half the price of typical virtual desktop infrastructure options out there and will free users from the need to manage the various IT components as separate pieces.
The GM of Amazon WorkSpaces Gene Farrell took to the AWS Summit stage to offer a use case scenario that highlights the mobility benefits provided by the platform: Given the ease of transferring a desktop from a Mac to an iPad, if a user is called off to a meeting midway through a task, they can quickly go from one device to the other while maintaining the same desktop. The user can grab their tablet and head off and everything on their desktop is with them in that meeting, Farrell said.
Jassy also announced a refresh of HS1 instances, which provide very high storage density and high sequential read-and-write performance per instance, and the launch of a new memory optimization family, R3, which Jassy said is the best place to run memory-optimized workloads.