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September 19, 2017

AWS to charge per-second in major pricing revamp

Will this new development prove to be beneficial both financially and for further innovation?

By Tom Ball

AWS has edged ahead of the competition by announcing that it will begin charging for the use of its EC2 servers by the second, as of the 2nd of October.

The major cloud player competes at the top of the pile with Google and Microsoft, both of which transitioned to charging on a per-minute basis before AWS.

Google surged ahead in 2013 when it introduced the per-minute structure, a move that marked a major step forwards, with AWS still working on the per-hour charging format.

When the change comes into action at the beginning of October, it will only be compatible with Linux virtual machines.

AWS to charge per-second in major pricing revamp

Jeff Barr, chief evangelist, AWS, said in a blog post on the announcement: “While this will result in a price reduction for many workloads (and you know we love price reductions), I don’t think that’s the most important aspect of this change. I believe that this change will inspire you to innovate and to think about your compute-bound problems in new ways. How can you use it to improve your support for continuous integration?”

Price is a crucial factor when these major contenders are vying for the cloud top spot, and this more granular approach from AWS is set to be financially beneficial.

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“This change is effective in all AWS Regions and will be effective October 2, for all Linux instances that are newly launched or already running. Per-second billing is not currently applicable to instances running Microsoft Windows or Linux distributions that have a separate hourly charge. There is a 1 minute minimum charge per-instance,” said Barr.

According to Akamai analysis, proficiency in Azure and Google Cloud is in higher demand than AWS skills, with Azure proving to be 62 percent more desirable. This pressure applied to AWS will be a driving factor in the introduction of innovation to set itself apart in the market.

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