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Amazon S3's Response to Financial Mess: Cut Prices

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Now here's a great response from a smart company to the current U.S. financial panic: Lower prices for a hot item—storage in the cloud.

Amazon Web Services Oct. 9 announced that it will lower prices for the very popular Amazon Simple Storage Service (known as Amazon S3) effective Nov. 1. The new tiered pricing will offer significant volume discounts so that customer costs will decrease as their storage volume grows. (Note caviat: The base prices for up to 50TB remains the same; it's the incremental prices that have come down.)

That's one way to nip a recession in the proverbial bud.

There is no minimum fee to get started and no long-term commitment, and users pay only for what they use. Amazon S3 uses a simple Web services interface that can be used to store any amount of data in either the United States or Europe and retrieve the data at any time from anywhere on the Web. And you can store a lot of stuff, too.

Here's the new pricing list, for both the United States and EU:

0-50TB: $0.150/GB (U.S.); $0.180/GB (EU)—first 50TB per month of storage used 50-100TB: $0.140/GB (U.S.); $0.170/GB (EU)—next 50TB per month of storage used 100-500 TB: $0.130/GB (U.S.); $0.160/GB (EU)—next 400TB per month of storage used 500TB+: $0.120/GB (U.S.); $0.150/GB (EU)—storage used per month over 500TB

There are more than 29 billion objects stored in Amazon S3, up from 22 billion at the end of Q2 2008. On Oct. 1, the service peaked at more than 70,000 requests per second to store, retrieve or delete an object. Amazon S3 is used to store and back up personal and business data, to host static Web site content, and to share files with external business partners in a secure, scalable manner.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos recently disclosed that Amazon is now using two-thirds of its data center computing power for its online storage and Web services divisions. It's amazing to think that these services are requiring that much more investment and attention than Amazon's stores, which are already among the busiest Web sites in the world.

No wonder Bezos said that he thinks Amazon's long-term future is in storage and Web services.

To check out Amazon S3, go here.

Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor-in-Chief of eWEEK and responsible for all the publication's coverage. In his 15 years and more than 4,000 articles at eWEEK, he has distinguished himself in reporting...