Cloud computing just got cheaper and faster

One year after Amazon Web Services launched its Redshift brand data warehousing solution, the company has upgraded the service to offer users faster data crunching capabilities at lower cost.

Technically speaking, the company said the Redshift data warehousing service added something called dense compute nodes, a new SSD-based node type, that enables customers to create even faster, lower-cost data warehouses. Customers can now start smaller, with 160GB datasets for as little as 10 cents an hour and then easily scale to a cluster with thousands of cores, terabytes of RAM, and hundreds of terabytes of SSD storage as their needs grow.

“Amazon Redshift has become the fastest-growing service in the history of AWS by providing customers with a fast, fully managed, petabyte-scale data warehousing service for a tenth the price of traditional solutions,” said Raju Gulabani, VP of database services for AWS. “We have been actively engaging with our customers using Amazon Redshift and watching them tap into insights that were previously out of reach to help grow their businesses. Today, we are making Amazon Redshift even more accessible to customers, lowering the cost of a single node by as much as 56% while increasing the ratio of CPU, RAM, and I/O to storage to offer even higher performance.”

Amazon said its Redshift customers now have two choices of nodes: a dense compute node and dense storage node. The difference is dense compute nodes are ideal for customers who have less than 500GB of data in their data warehouse or for customers with more than 500GB of data whose primary focus is performance. With dense compute nodes, customers can scale up to hundreds of terabytes, giving them the highest ratio of CPU, memory, and I/O to storage. Where the dense storage nodes come into play is when performance isn’t as critical for a customer’s use case, or if customers want to prioritize reducing costs further. Dense storage nodes can scale up to a petabyte or more of compressed user data.

Among the customers who takes advantage of Redshift is Pinterest, the visual discovery tool where people Pin ideas and plans to their boards.

“At Pinterest, we analyze tens of billions of objects, including pins, boards, and places, across our web and mobile properties to understand and optimize the Pinner experience for tens of millions of people around the world,” said Mohammad Shahangian, data scientist at Pinterest. “Amazon Redshift has been a huge win. It’s made big data feel small and enabled our data science team to run the queries they need across a huge, rapidly growing data set. Amazon Redshift is easy to manage and with both the dense storage and dense compute node types, we know that regardless of our cost, storage, and performance needs, Amazon Redshift is up to the challenge."

Since its launch in February 2013, Amazon said its Redshift customers have created tens of thousands of development, test, and production data warehouses, and the service has been adopted by customers across a wide range of industries including advertising, financial services, manufacturing, media, healthcare, social media, mobile applications, and gaming. In addition to Pinterest, other customers include Fender, Financial Times, MediaMath, Nasdaq OMX and Nokia.

Launched in 2006, Amazon Web Services began offering key infrastructure services to businesses in the form of web services, or what is now commonly known as cloud computing.

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