Amazon Ratchets Up Competition in 5G, Hybrid IT

Amazon Ratchets Up Competition in 5G, Hybrid IT

Among the highlights of Amazon Web Services re:Invent, ongoing in Las Vegas through Dec. 9, are three Tuesday announcements that strengthen its presence in the enterprise hybrid IT infrastructure market:

  • AWS is teaming with Verizon to deliver 5G edge cloud computing;
  • The first AWS Local Zone is located in Los Angeles; and
  • AWS Outposts are generally available.

These moves “close some huge competitive gaps they had with regard to hybrid cloud deployments where Amazon didn’t have an offering, which was costing them a lot of business,” observed Rob Enderle, principal analyst at the Enderle Group.
They “effectively move AWS into the server hardware space, and that will create some interesting discussions with their hardware partners,” he told TechNewsWorld.
Expect similar moves from Microsoft and Google, Enderle predicted.
AWS is copying Oracle’s Exadata Database Machine approach, suggested Holger Mueller, principal analyst at Constellation Research.
“If Oracle puts an Exadata server in your corporate datacenter, you provide the connections and the space and the power, and Oracle manages everything magically,” he told TechNewsWorld. “That’s what AWS is going to do.”

AWS and the 5G Edge

AWS is partnering with Verizon to let enterprise customers leverage 5G networks.
Verizon will use AWS’ new service, AWS Wavelength, on its 5G Edge compute platform.
5G Edge provides mobile edge computing and an efficient high-volume connection, while AWS Wavelength lets developers deploy their applications to Wavelength Zones — infrastructure deployments that embed AWS compute and storage services within the network operators’ datacenters at the edge of the 5G network.
Application traffic can travel from a mobile device to a cell tower to a Wavelength Zone running in a metro aggregation site, instead of taking multiple hops between regional aggregation sites and across the Internet.
Parts of applications that require ultra-low latency can be deployed to the network edge and then seamlessly connect back to the full range of AWS cloud services.
Developers will be able to deliver applications at the edge for machine learning inference, autonomous industrial equipment, smart cars and cities, the Internet of Things, and augmented and virtual reality.
Developers can extend their Amazon Virtual Private Cloud to include a Wavelength Zone, then create various AWS resources to deploy their application to the 5G edge.
They can continue using AWS services such as AWS CloudFormation, AWS Identity and Access Management, and AWS Auto Scaling to manage, secure and scale their applications.
Select customers, including the United States National Football League and video game publisher Bethesda Softworks, are running a pilot of AWS Wavelength on 5G Edge in Chicago. More deployments are planned for other U.S. locations next year.
“Applications like streaming and gaming will drive 5G with consumers,” said Jim McGregor, principal analyst at Tirias Research.
5G will enable Industrial Internet of Things applications, he told TechNewsWorld. “However, the driver really is artificial intelligence, and applications that require real-time or close to real-time processing. IoT and AI really require new networks, and 5G is just a part of that new network buildout.”
This is a “very strategic move,” Constellation’s Mueller noted. “If the Verizon datacenter is taken by AWS, that’s less space for Google or Microsoft.”
Verizon’s 5G Ultra Wideband network is live in 18 cities, and in 16 sporting and entertainment arenas across the U.S. It will be expanded to more than 30 U.S. cities by the end of the year.
AWS also is partnering with several other mobile telecommunications firms offering 5G networks worldwide, including Vodafone, Japan’s KDDI, and South Korea’s SK Telecom.
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