10 years on. How AWS came to be

Ten years ago Amazon.com had the foresight to launch Amazon Web ServicesThey recognised the potential due to their own conflicts with the storage and the handling of big data analytics, but I doubt even they,  could have anticipated what it has grown to become today. So, just how did AWS come to be and what is the driving forces that year on year keeps them at the top of their game? With a company mantra stating “We seek to offer the Earth’s Biggest Selection, and to be the Earth’s most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they may want to buy online.” What was Amazom.com “The Early Years”

Amazon.com “The Early Years”.

In 1994, Jeffrey Bezos began Amazon.com from his home is Seattle Washington. He pioneered the idea of online sales. Amazon.com  was Launched on the 5th of July 1995 on the world wide web, it has just celebrated its 21st birthday. From humble begins as an online bookstore, starting out of Jeff Bezos garage, the site opened with a searchable database of over 1 million titles, allowing customers to enter their search information, enabling the system to search through its database and find the required title . The uniqueness about this at the time was that Amazon.com only carried 2000 titles in stock. Most orders through Amazon.com were placed directly through wholesalers and publishers , so no warehouse was needed Amazon.com would simply receive the books from the other sources then ship them to the customers.

Amazon Books

Image source: www.msiatlanta.com 

Because of the Internet, this small venture was catapulted to a large scope fast, and within a month of launching the website they had orders from over 50 States and 45 countries worldwide. Due to this success, Bezos moved to offices in Seattle this served as a company support, shipping and receiving area. Amazon.com became a pioneer in the world of internet commerce and set the standard for web-based business. The company grew from strength to strength because of the goals Bezos focused on, by offering customers more services, making them user-friendly and offering a discount of up to 10-30 %. Less than two years after its launch Amazon.com became a public company in May 1997. With the business expanding, the next 10 years saw an array of services and acquisitions added to meet customers needs. However, they ran into some problems.

Amazon.com, Fixing Problems

When Amazon.com tried to launch  an e-commerce service in 2000 called Merchant.com to help third-party merchants like Target or Marks & Spencer build online shopping sites on top of Amazon’s e-commerce engine. The challenges were great, mainly due to scalability. In 1994, Amazon.com, didn’t really plan well for future requirements. Instead of an organized development environment, they had unknowingly created a jumbled mess. That made it a huge challenge to separate the various services to make a centralized development platform that would be useful for third parties. Unknowingly this detangling, centralized approach was the start of Amazon Web Services.

The start of AWS

This untangled mess became documented APIs enabling their internal developers to become organized and disciplined and led the way towards developing tools internally. However, due to expansion and growth even with new software engineers, building applications was not being achieved fast enough. Amazon CEO, Andy Jassey, discovered  everyone was building their own resources for individual projects. With the realization of the need for a common infrastructure  service that everyone could access, Amazon.com set out to build one. Launched in July 2002, the Amazon Web Services platform exposes technology and product data from Amazon and its affiliates, enabling developers to build innovative and entrepreneurial applications on their own.

At a retreat in 2003, the initial growth of the idea evolved. Because of Amazon knowledge and experience of running infrastructure services, such as compute, storage and databases , they had also become highly skilled at running reliable, scalable, cost -efficient data centers out of need. By summer 2003, they started to think of these set of services as an operating system for the internet. Just how they would achieve this would take another three years of research, trial, and error. The goal now was the development of services that would allow any organization or company or developer, to run their technology applications on the Amazon Web Services infrastructure platform.

In 2006, because of their global success and experience in handling and storing large volumes of data, Amazon Web Services was the first to market, with the launch of Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud(EC2) in August 2006. This modern cloud IT infrastructure service, in the form of web services, is now commonly known as cloud computing.

AWS Logo

Today, Amazon Web Services provides a highly reliable, scalable, low-cost infrastructure platform in the cloud that powers hundreds of thousands of businesses in 190 countries around the world. With data center locations in the U.S, Europe, Brazil, Singapore, Japan, Australia, and most recently India, customers across all industries are taking advantage of AWS policies on customers needs.

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