What is AWS & How Amazon Web Services Works?

If you ever wanted an on-demand cloud computing platform where you can host your online services without any worries then you must get suggestions to grab services of AWS also known as Amazon Web Services. But how it works and what is it exactly, let’s find out today.

The Amazon logo features an arrow joining the A to the Z.  According to company legend, the logo was designed that way to indicate the breadth of stock available at Amazon.  That range of choice has only increased with the corporate juggernaut offering an ever-growing array of goods and services, as well as acting as a facilitator for other companies.

Third-party sellers have long seen Amazon as an attractive alternative to eBay, now Amazon is increasing its reach into the business community with the launch of Amazon web services.

What is AWS? How Amazon Web Services Works?

amazon web services

Quite simply AWS is a cloud-based set of tools to enable users to carry out essential tasks without the need to make an initial investment in infrastructure.  Its key components are:

S3 – Simple Storage Service

This is exactly what it claims to be.  There are plenty of other cloud-based storage solutions, indeed storage is one of the cloud’s strong points, but many of them are based on the assumption that they will be used to store business documents and files.  S3 is a capable option for hosting entire websites and media content.

EC2 – Elastic Compute Cloud

In other words, a collection of servers that can be hired and decommissioned on demand to be used as the tenant sees fit, for as long as they need them.

RDS – Relational Database Service

This is a database on-demand solution, which can be used with S3 if needed.  For example, S3 could host an e-commerce website and RDS takes care of the back-office inventory database.

EBS – Amazon Elastic Block Store

While S3 is a hosted solution EBS is the equivalent of a giant hard drive in which any and all data can be safely stored.

Amazon Simple E-mail Service (Amazon SES)

A bulk e-mail application, typically used for sending newsletters and other bulk communications.

There are many more possible options in the Amazon Web Services Range and for the moment they are all essentially back-office services, rather than the sort of corporate productivity software which would typically be used by non-IT staff.  That said, Amazon has gone a long way to address the criticisms surrounding its perceived lack of user-friendliness and its dashboard controls are now significantly easier to understand and use.  This means that it would potentially be feasible to train some non-IT staff to use at least some aspects of the service.

Amazon Web Services also includes its Mechanical Turk service, which is a team of freelance, cloud-based micro-workers who take on tasks for which human intelligence is required.  In essence, it is a hugely flexible, workforce with varying degrees of skill.  The fact that this service is included with the web services highlights the nature of Amazon’s strategy.  In short, Amazon is providing (or aiming to provide) all the back-office services a company (or individual) needs to be able to undertake projects with minimal outlay and maximum effectiveness.

AWS Provides Massive Speed to Market

Even if finances are available, it is hugely difficult to build an effective, large-scale infrastructure in a short space of time, and attempts to do so often end up highlighting the meaning of the saying “more haste less speed”.  With AWS the infrastructure is already in place, companies just buy what they need for as long as they need it.

AWS Provides a Buffer from Up-front Costs

Building infrastructure is expensive and even if the costs can ultimately be recouped from the end client, there is typically a period when work is being undertaken but payment is yet to be received.  Depending on the project, there may be a deluge of work, to begin with, the cost of which will only be recouped at some point much further down the line.  By using AWS companies eliminate the up-front costs of creating infrastructure, making this period easier to manage.

AWS Comes with Outstanding Scalability

Educated guesses are a part of life, but in some circumstances guessing wrong can hurt, and in financial terms over-or under-estimating resource requirements is one of them.  AWS offers companies the opportunity to buy what they need, when they need it, and dispose of it immediately when it becomes surplus to requirements.

AWS is also an effective solution for companies who know very precisely what their resource requirements are, but which experience short spikes of resource demand, followed by longer periods of more moderate usage.  This is typical of companies that produce reports on a periodic basis.  Data needs to be collated throughout the month, but in order for comparisons to be valid, the actual analysis and reporting can only be undertaken in a very short time frame.  Using AWS for this type of situation is far more economical than building a data center which will only earn its keep a few days out of every month.

It provides outstanding robustness to AWS Users

The Amazon brand is on AWS, which means Amazon’s reputation is at stake if anything goes wrong.  Even the largest and best-run companies can have a mishap, but AWS users can rest assured that Amazon will be supplying the best quality equipment, the broadest of corporate broadband connections, and the best IT support money can buy.

It provides a flexible, on-demand workforce with MTurk

MTurk is not the service to use for sophisticated, skilled work, nor is it the place to outsource any sort of service where you need to have some sort of workable relationship with your supplier, such as customer care, where your outsourced service provider is the face of your company.

It is, however, the place to outsource work that humans can do, just a bit better than computers.  Typically these would include transcribing the handwritten text, basic translation, and basic web research (such as confirming contact details).  While it is far from being the only offering of this kind, in fact, some might argue that it is far from being the best, the fact that it sits within the AWS platform adds an extra element of convenience to companies looking for reliable, robust service.

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Conclusion:

So, we hope now you have a complete idea about what is AWS and How Amazon Web Services works. So, now you are aware that if you want to grab any services from the AWS platform then which one to pick and how it works.

If you still have any queries or feedback in mind, you can drop them in the comment section below, I would love to know your thoughts.

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