Overview of AWS for Data and Analytics

Overview of AWS for Data and Analytics

AWS (Amazon Web Services) is Amazon’s cloud platform and has been the key driver behind the global paradigm shift to cloud computing.

AWS is pivotal to Amazon’s success, as it makes up 13% of Amazon’s total sales and brings in billions in revenue each year.   It has become one of the leading platforms today, capturing around 33% of the market share in the cloud platform space.

Millions of customers around the world use AWS to drive the success of their business, including government agencies, startups and businesses of all sizes.

But what makes this cloud platform so successful?  We’re going to provide an overview of AWS and how it can benefit your business from a data and analytics perspective.

What type of businesses use AWS?

AWS is used by a range of businesses, big and small.

Some of the most successful businesses who use AWS are: 

  • McDonalds
  • Netflix
  • Facebook
  • AirBnb 
  • Hitachi 
  • Unilever
  • Disney

AWS is also a great cloud platform for start-ups. 

In fact, you can build your business from the ground up with AWS’s expansive range of start-up services. AWS Activate even offers training programs to help new businesses achieve their full potential.

Therefore, AWS can be used by businesses of any size at any stage of their journey. 

What does AWS provide for data and analytics services?

AWS is a comprehensive cloud platform that contains many cloud-based products and on-demand services.  A significant range of these services are dedicated to data and analytics, allowing customers to store, ingest, transform, analyse and report on data.  

A key service offered is Redshift, which is AWS’s data warehousing platform.  Redshift is one of AWS’s most popular service and relies heavily on other data services including: 

  • Athena – designed for interactive analytics 
  • EMR – designed for big data processing 
  • Kinesis – designed for real time data streaming services
  • Quicksight – designed for building dashboards and visualisations 
  • Glue – AWS’s data catalog 
  • Sagemaker – a platform service for Machine Learning and Predictive Analytics

What are the key features of Redshift? 

Redshift has been AWS’s key data warehouse service for many years and provides a variety of features that accelerate time to insights: 

  • Serverless options enable AWS to manage your infrastructure without any user involvement
  • Seamlessly integrates with AWS storage and database services
  • Support for industry standard SQL so it is quick and easy to ramp up 
  • Designed to scale automatically and enable optimised queries to be utilised without user interaction.  
  • Share data across accounts via Data Exchange
  • Query Editor enables developers and analysts to visualise and share queries 
  • ML enables machine learning models to be built and managed 

How do I skill up on Redshift? 

AWS provides a rich set of resources to enable you to learn how Redshift works, and how to get started.  Of particular use is the learning resources, which provide conceptual introductions, show you how to load and analyse your data, and even provide you with examples on how to integrate Redshift with 3rd party tools eg. BI and ETL vendors.   There are lots of good, short videos that walk you through this process.

There are also online instructor-led classes that bring together all the relevant AWS services when architecting and solutioning Redshift for your data warehouse requirements. 

Finally, there are many AWS certifications including a Data and Analytics specialisation.  The exam comprises a mixture of multiple choice and multiple response, whilst exam guides and sample questions are available to enable you to prepare for the exam.

How AWS can benefit your business

AWS has millions of active users and there are many reasons why. 

We’re going to highlight some of AWS’s key features that can drive the success of your business.

It’s cost efficient

AWS offers over 200 services, but it recognises that different businesses will utilise different services. As such, AWS offers a pay-as-you-go pricing model, with no long-term contracts or termination fees, or you can lock in long term reserved instances for hugely discounted pricing.

It’s scalable and flexible 

AWS is scalable, allowing it to power businesses of any size.  With managed services and serverless computing,  AWS can offer a computing platform that automatically scales based on your performance requirements at any given time. 

It therefore adapts to the needs of your business and acknowledges that these needs will change over time, making it a flexible solution for any data-driven business.

It helps you manage big data

As we’ve discussed earlier, AWS offers many data management services that can help you get the most out of your data.   The broad range of services tools help you extract, analyse, process and visualise your data, allowing you to make better data driven decisions.

It offers AI powered tools

AWS offers significant artificial intelligence capability to help your business become the best it can be.  Developers can build innovative smart apps that incorporate machine learning algorithms and the platform also offers facial recognition, text-to-speech and chatbot technology, making it accessible for its users.

It has high security measures 

AWS was built with the highest levels of security, has extensive capabilities that satisfy the security requirements for world banks, government organisations and other highly sensitive businesses. 

With over 230 security features, AWS is the perfect platform for businesses who prioritise the safety of their data.

It’s an innovative solution

AWS allows businesses to access the latest technologies, helping them become more competitive. It provides a space for experimentation and play, allowing businesses to discover new ways to develop innovative approaches.  

Today’s businesses rely on data to come up with rich, meaningful insights.

AWS’s data and analytics services, including Redshift for data warehousing, provide a mature, proven, scalable and cost effective solution for meeting your data insight requirements.

Do you want to see the benefits of modern data platforms? Chat to us today.