Amazon Launches Flash-based Cloud Data Warehousing Option

By Pedro Hernandez

Amazon Web Services (AWS) unveiled a new, flash-based option for its Redshift cloud data warehousing offering.

Based on the company's new SSD-based Dense Compute nodes, the service provides faster and more budget-friendly data warehouses that allow customers to start with 160 GB datasets for $0.10 per hour. Subscribers can "then easily scale to a cluster with thousands of cores, terabytes of RAM, and hundreds of terabytes of SSD storage as their needs grow," said the company in a statement.

The AWS Dense Compute node option, which joins the existing Dense Storage service, is geared toward customers with less than 500 GB in their data warehouse or organizations with more than 500 GB of data that need a flash-enabled push to speed up their analytics applications, according to the company.

Describing Amazon Redshift, which launched in February 2013, as the "the fastest-growing service in the history of AWS," Raju Gulabani, vice president of Database Services for AWS, said his company has been actively engaged with Redshift customers and "watching them tap into insights that were previously out of reach to help grow their businesses." With new Dense Compute nodes for Amazon Redshift, the company is looking to put those insights within the reach of more businesses.

"Today, we are making Amazon Redshift even more accessible to customers, lowering the cost of a single node by as much as 56 percent while increasing the ratio of CPU, RAM, and I/O to storage to offer even higher performance," added Gulabani.

In less than a year that the service has been commercially available, Redshift has been home to "tens of thousands of development, test, and production data warehouses," boasted AWS. The cloud service has garnered interest from a wide range of industries and experienced adoption by financial, advertising, social media and healthcare firms, to name a few.

Redshift's client list includes Fender, Financial Times, Nasdaq OMX, Nokia, and Pinterest. The latter is using Redshift making "big data feel small," said Pinterest data scientist Mohammad Shahangian in a statement.

Pinterest analyzes "tens of billions of objects, including pins, boards, and places" across its website and mobile apps to optimize "the Pinner experience for tens of millions of people around the world," added Shahangian. "Amazon Redshift has been a huge win."

Amazon Redshift Dense Compute nodes are available now. The company has switched the service on in its data centers on both U.S. coasts (North Virginia and Oregon), as well as in Europe and Asia Pacific (Singapore, Sydney and Tokyo).

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at InfoStor. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

This article was originally published on January 27, 2014