What is AWS and Should You Use It?

AWS has already made a name for itself as a leading cloud computing platform. But what’s so great about AWS anyway? And is it the right fit for your organization?

What is AWS?

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is a collection of over 200 cloud computing services. These services include computing, development, storage, networking, and security. From its humble start in 2004, AWS has grown to become the world’s most popular cloud computing platform.

Who uses AWS?

Millions of organizations use AWS, from startups and nonprofits to million-dollar corporations like Netflix, Facebook, and BBC.

What are the benefits of using AWS?

With so many companies using AWS, it’s clear that the platform has a lot to offer. In fact, there are five main benefits of using AWS.

1. It's cost-effective

AWS uses a pay-as-you-go model, and you only pay for what you use. Amazon doesn’t ask for an upfront estimate; costs are calculated automatically as you use the service.

Additionally, since AWS allows you to store on the cloud, you won’t spend heaps of money on a physical storage system. And the automation AWS provides cuts down on the number of personnel needed for things like chatting with customers and sending invoices. Not to mention it saves you time, and time is money.

2. It’s flexible

AWS is a system that will grow with you—which is why so many startups choose to use it. It’s reliable but low cost in the beginning, and as you expand your offerings or take on more customers, you can seamlessly increase your storage or computing capacity and branch out into using more of AWS’ services.

Amazon also makes it easy (and cost-effective) to migrate your existing system onto their platform.

3. It’s convenient

With AWS, you can spend less time completing tedious tasks and more time planning your business strategy. That’s the beauty of automation.

And since Amazon automatically tracks your usage and bills you accordingly, it’s the perfect combination of convenient and efficient.

4. It’s secure

One reason why so many high-level companies use AWS is because its security is second to none. From threat protection to data privacy and access management, Amazon is constantly innovating and improving its cybersecurity services.

Data centers are very well maintained, well hidden, and spread across the globe for diversification, which means if something happens to one center, you won’t lose all your data. If security is breached, you can bet Amazon will be on it faster than you can blink.

For these reasons, AWS typically offers much more security than you could get from your own data server.

5. When something goes wrong, you have a huge support network

When something goes wrong with your own computing system, you have to call IT or figure it out yourself. When something goes wrong with AWS, you can just hop onto the AWS Support Center and get help. Or, since there are millions of AWS customers worldwide, chances are you can just Google your problem and find a solution within seconds.

Is AWS right for you?

Clearly, there are plenty of good reasons to use AWS. The top benefits are that it’s flexible, cost-effective, and highly secure. If you’re a startup hoping to grow significantly in the next few years, it can be a great option, but it’s also a viable platform for organizations large and small.

Of course, like any new system, AWS has a bit of a learning curve, so be prepared to spend a little extra time familiarizing yourself with it and training your team on how to use it in the beginning. In particular, if you’re using AWS to build a web application, you may benefit from adding a developer to your team.

Using AWS to build an app

If you want to build a web or mobile application, you’ll need the following AWS services:

  • AWS Amplify
  • Amazon API Gateway
  • AWS Lambda
  • Amazon DynamoDB
  • AWS Web Console

The good news is that Amazon has several tutorials to guide you through the app creation process, so theoretically, you could build a simple web application in under a few hours, even if you’ve never written code before

Then again, chances are you’ve got a lot of other things on your plate, and you may not have the time to try and figure out how to build an app, even if Amazon makes it relatively easy. Additionally, if you want a more complicated or personalized app, hiring a developer is still your best bet.

Many developers have experience using AWS, and in addition to simply building an app, they can help you maintain it, migrate your current business processes onto the new platform, and optimize your AWS services to help your organization thrive.

Band of Coders has plenty of experience building in AWS, and we’d be happy to help. Schedule a free call to learn more.

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