While many people are unaware of just how many sites rely on Amazon Web Services to host information, more are aware of just how big a service AWS is after sites across the country went down Tuesday afternoon as a result of outages for Amazon. The issues are causing partially or even fully downed service for sites and apps that utilize the service. How bad is it? Should Amazon be worried?
How Bad are These AWS Outages for Amazon?
Businesses across the country may have lost out on millions Tuesday, with whole websites failing due to their reliance on Amazon’s AWS hosting service. Amazon said the outage was due to “high error rates with S3 in US-East-1”, which is where the company says it was working on “remediating the issue”. No further details were initially given out, but the S3 issues were resolved after a few hours, according to Amazon.
More and more applications have been built to natively support the S3 API as a result of how popular S3 has become for object storage. Popular sites and apps include tech communication tool Slack, image hosting throughout various publisher websites, Giphy, Business Insider, Dropbox, Tumblr, and many, many more. In all, Amazon S3 is used by about 150,000 websites. In a twist of irony, Amazon’s status indicators in AWS run on S3, meaning that the dashboard which displayed the service was frozen and thus also down, but telling servers it was up. Amazon tweeted updates for users, and managed to get the issue resolved, but damage was still done.
S3 is experiencing high error rates. We are working hard on recovering.
— Amazon Web Services (@awscloud) February 28, 2017
Amazon may be known for its online retail store, but since Amazon competes on price within the store and offers free shipping on many items, the company continues to innovate and bring in profit from other revenue streams. AWS is a major source of income for the company, since it’s cost effective for businesses and easy to use. But any crash there can be costly to businesses and cause them to switch services.
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Watch this video clip from Defango regarding the AWS outage:
As such, because this isn’t the first outage for AWS, it’s a bit concerning for shareholders who rely on the service to bring in profits for the company. But the fact is, Amazon is one of the most innovative companies in the world today. Jeff Bezos and team continue to expand into new fields and markets, including everything from online retail store to video streaming to web storage and even fresh produce and corner stores. While Amazon may dip down a bit on the news, the fact is that Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN) will always make for a great long-term play.
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