Today Amazon Web Services has taken another important step in serving customers worldwide: the AWS Asia Pacific (Singapore) Region is now launched. Customers can now store their data and run their applications from our Singapore location in the same way they do from our other U.S. and European Regions.

The importance of Regions

Quite often "The Cloud" is portrayed as something magically transparent that lives somewhere in the internet. This portrayal can be a desirable and useful abstraction when discussing cloud services at the application and end-user level. However, when speaking about cloud services in terms of Infrastructure-as-a-Service, it is very important to make the geographic locations of services more explicit. There are four main reasons to do so:

  • Performance - For many applications and services, data access latency to end users is important. You need to be able to place your systems in locations where you can minimize the distance to your most important customers. The new Singapore Region offers customers in APAC lower-latency access to AWS services.
  • Availability - The cloud makes it possible to build resilient applications to make sure they can survive different failure scenarios. Currently, each AWS Region contains multiple Availability Zones, which are distinct locations that are engineered to be insulated from failures in other Availability Zones. By placing instances in different Availability Zones, developers can build systems that can survive many complex failure scenarios. The Asia Pacific (Singapore) region launches with two Availability Zones.
  • Jurisdictions - Some customers face regulatory requirements regarding where data is stored. AWS Regions are independent, which means objects stored in a Region never leave the Region unless you transfer them out. For example, objects stored in the EU (Ireland) Region never leave the EU. Customers thus maintain control and maximum flexibility to architect their systems in a way that allows them to place applications and data in the geographic jurisdiction of their choice.
  • Cost-effectiveness - Cost-effectiveness continues to be one of the key decision making factors in managing IT infrastructure, whether physical or cloud-based. AWS has a history of continuously driving costs down and letting customers benefit from these cost reductions in the form of reduced pricing. Our prices vary by Region, primarily because of varying costs associated with running infrastructure in different geographies; for example, the cost of power may vary quite a bit across different regions, countries, or even cities. We are committed to delivering the lowest cost services possible to our customers based on the cost dynamics of each particular Region.

Worldwide uniform application deployment

singapore.jpg Regions have become a very important tool for worldwide rollout of applications. The uniformity of the environment allows customers who have built applications for one Region to easily launch the application in a different Region. For example, there is a large European Insurance company that is looking to expand their EU-based product offerings to the Asia Pacific market. With some minor configuration changes, they can simply move the software running in the AWS EU Region to the AWS Singapore Region and rapidly begin serving Asia Pacific customers. Before AWS, the cost and complexity of moving these applications in a traditional IT model would have prohibited or delayed the company's entry into the Asia Pacific market.

You can begin using Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), Amazon SimpleDB, Amazon Relational Database Service (Amazon RDS), Amazon Simple Queue Service (Amazon SQS), Amazon Simple Notification Service (Amazon SNS), Amazon CloudWatch, and Amazon CloudFront from the Singapore Region beginning today. Go to http://aws.amazon.com/products for pricing.

You can also find more information on the AWS developer blog. All the RightScale services are available for the new region as well, read more on their blog.

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