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3/17/2006
06:30 PM
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Amazon Launches Online Storage Service

Amazon Web Services charges 15 cents per gigabyte of storage per month and 20 cents per gigabyte of data transferred, with no minimum fee.

Amazon.com is looking to wring some cash flow from its massive investment in computing infrastructure by offering an online storage service called Amazon S3 to software developers and Internet businesses.

The service takes advantage of the online retailer's fast, reliable, scalable computing infrastructure based on commodity hardware, and charges 15 cents per gigabyte of storage per month and 20 cents per gigabyte of data transferred. There's no minimum fee. Developers pay only for what they use, rather than having to buy storage and bandwidth in advance and pay fees for exceeding the prepaid capacity.

Amazon Web Services already has about 150,000 registered developers. In addition to storage, Amazon has made available to developers its A9.com OpenSearch service, E-commerce APIs, Mechanical Turk API for soliciting solutions for computing problems from independent programmers, and Alexa Web Search Platform. Amazon Web Services sells other companies tools to compete with Google, Microsoft, and Yahoo.

Don Alvarez, development manager for FilmmakerLive.com, a maker of storyboarding software for the motion picture industry, gives Amazon high marks in helping to hasten projects. "The API that Amazon put together is incredibly simple, and that's a huge advantage," he says. Within a day of getting the software development kit, "we had our own sample application working with their storage system."

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