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Amazon Web Services Launches Redshift

Amazon announced a limited preview of Amazon Redshift, a new product from Amazon Web Services described as a “fast and powerful, fully managed, petabyte-scale data warehouse service in the cloud”.

According to Amazon, it enables customers to “dramatically” increase the speed of query performance when analyzing any size data set, with the same SQL-based BI tools they’re already using.

“With a few clicks in the AWS Management Console, customers can launch a Redshift cluster, starting with a few hundred gigabytes and scaling to a petabyte or more, for under $1,000 per terabyte per year – one tenth the price of most data warehousing solutions available to customers today,” the company said in an announcement.

Amazon Web Services VP of Database Services, Raju Gulabani, said, “Over the past two years, one of the most frequent requests we’ve heard from customers is for AWS to build a data warehouse service. Enterprises are tired of paying such high prices for their data warehouses and smaller companies can’t afford to analyze the vast amount of data they collect (often throwing away 95% of their data). This frustrates customers as they know the cloud has made it easier and less expensive than ever to collect, store, and analyze data.”

“Amazon Redshift not only significantly lowers the cost of a data warehouse, but also makes it easy to analyze large amounts of data very quickly,” he added. “While actual performance will vary based on each customers’ specific query requirements, our internal tests have shown over 10 times performance improvement when compared to standard relational data warehouses. Having the ability to quickly analyze petabytes of data at a low cost changes the game for our customers.”

Participants in the private beta program include Netflix, Flipboard, NASA/JPL and Schumacher Group.

Kurt Brown, Director of Data Science & Engineering Platform at Netflix, said, “At Netflix, we deliver personalized recommendations for our millions of subscribers by analyzing large volumes of data, and are always looking for ways to improve our service. We’re very excited about the cost-disruptive and cloud-based model of Amazon Redshift. It’s sure to shake up the data warehousing industry.”

Erik Selberg, Manager of the Amazon.com Data Warehouse team, added, “The Amazon Enterprise Data Warehouse manages petabytes of data for every group at Amazon. We are seeing significant performance improvements leveraging Amazon Redshift over our current multi-million dollar data warehouse. Some multi-hour queries finish in under an hour, and some queries that took 5-10 minutes on our current data warehouse are now returning in seconds with Amazon Redshift. Early estimates show the cost of Amazon Redshift will be well under 1/10th the cost of our existing solution. Amazon Redshift is providing us with a cost-effective way to scale with our growing data analysis needs.”

Amazon reportedly also announced  that it has dropped the pricing for its S3 storage service by about 25%

Earlier this week, Google announced some new features, lower prices and extended data center accessibility for its cloud platform, including a price reduction for its Cloud Storage offering, and the introduction of a limited preview of Durable Reduced Availability storage, which provides a lower price storage option for users. More on all of that here.

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