Amazon Announces Its AWS Data Center in London

By Xyla Joelle L. Fernandez

Dec 15, 2016 06:42 AM EST

Amazon's AWS cloud computing service announced that it would launch a data center in the UK by the end of 2016. It's now the end of 2016 and, true to its word, AWS has now launched its "Europe (London)" region to supplement its existing European regions in Ireland and Frankfurt which opened in 2007 and 2014.

In total, AWS now offers its uses a choice between 16 regions with a total of 42 availability zones around the world. That's up from 11 regions only a year ago and a number that's likely to increase over the course of 2017. The new region in London will feature two availability zones.

London will offer all of AWS's core services (think EC2, S3, RDS, etc.). It's worth noting that some of AWS' more advanced tools like Lambda and its recently announced machine learning services won't be available in London just yet. Amazon's portfolio of managed enterprise mail, file storage, sharing and virtual desktop services also isn't yet available in London.

"With the launch of the AWS Europe (London) Region, AWS can enable many more UK enterprise, public sector and startup customers to reduce IT costs, address data locality needs, and embark on rapid transformations in critical new areas, such as big data analysis and Internet of Things," Amazon CTO Werner Vogels writes on his blog today.

The data center being placed in the UK also comes with other implications, most specifically addressing some user issues related to privacy in light of the decision by the European High Court to strike down the Safe Harbor rules which had previously held sway. Amazon's position has been that users decide where data resides; an additional EU data center will improve performance and availability of users in those facilities and allow AWS users to deploy region redundant data and applications more easily completely within the EU.

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