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Amazon Web Service exec on competing with Google and Microsoft

Brandon Butler | April 8, 2016
Plus, would AWS ever offer a private cloud? Do customers outgrow the cloud?

I wouldn’t say it’s holding us back. We’re a pretty fast growing business and we’re still growing pretty quickly. We probably have on AWS the most successful and largest collection of real enterprise hybrid applications and use cases of hybrid serving as a migration platform to going all in on AWS.

You can look at a company like Johnson & Johnson running 120 apps, which they expect to triple this year, seamlessly integrated across AWS and on-premises; they call it a ‘borderless’ data center where the apps can run between one and the other. We have folks like Comcast who built their new entertainment platform called X1 as a hybrid application that runs on premises and on AWS; it uses the scale of AWS plus their own internal data centers.

Samsung has hybrid applications, which are deployed across their data center plus the cloud; Hitachi is doing integrated resource management across their hybrid cloud of AWS and on-prem. These are not lightweight, un-thoughtful companies; these are large organizations who are running real, core, mission-critical workloads in a hybrid model across AWS and their data centers.

But in terms of an on-premises appliance that would mirror Amazon’s cloud, Amazon doesn’t have anything like that now. Do you ever get requests for that from customers? I know Amazon always talks about doing what customers are asking for.

That’s right. We don’t have anything like that today, but never say never. We’re going to continue to make investments to allow customers to use their on-premises infrastructure and use AWS. It’s a model that we see both as a way of utilizing existing investment, but also as an early stepping stone to much deeper, more thoughtful migration to AWS.

Customers use a combination of Amazon native tools and their on premises management tools. They use the bridges that we’ve built over the past three or four years, such as ones for identity federation, directory services, integrated networking with Direct Connect; we have plugins for vCenter and Systems Center; we have AWS Config and CloudTrail and even a service like CodeDeploy, which you can run on your own premises. We have things like Storage Gateway, which allows you to build out a gateway internally and then take data internally from your on premises environment and back it up to the cloud either for disaster recovery or for data replication. So there’s a pretty broad set of tools available to customers for building hybrid applications.

When you start looking at migrating data, we have things like a physical storage appliance, which we will send you in the form of our Snowball device that you can load data into, and then send it back to us and we’ll upload it to the cloud. We’re seeing huge uptick in our database migration tool, which allows you to select an on-prem database and then select a new database on AWS, click a couple of buttons, and we’ll manage the migration of that data over from places like Oracle and SQL Server on to open source platforms like MySQL, or increasingly into Amazon Aurora. We’ve already seen over 1,000 databases move since we made the announcement of database migration services, and it went into GA just last month. 


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