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Amazon Web Services to get content delivery network

New tool for developers due by the end of 2008

Amazon plans to launch a content delivery network to give application developers a vehicle for distributing public web content with low latency and high data transfer rates.

Now in private beta testing and scheduled for public release before the end of the year, this content delivery service will be the latest cloud-computing offering from Amazon Web Services, which also provides hosted computing capacity, e-commerce and storage services. The move was announced yesterday on the Amazon Web Services Blog.

Amazon Web Services aims to offer developers a suite of generic computing, payment, billing, fulfillment and web search services so that they can focus on the work of making their applications.

Amazon Web Services is part of the growing cloud-computing trend, in which IT vendors are hosting software in their own data centers and making it accessible via the internet so that the clients don't have to install it on their premises. This model, in theory, reduces hardware provisioning costs for clients and saves them the time and effort of installing and maintaining software.

Following the model of other Amazon Web Services offerings, the content delivery service will be billed based on usage, without requiring upfront usage or flat fee commitments.

Developers will only need to access a single API (application programming interface) to hook their web applications to the content delivery network. The service has been designed to work "seamlessly" with Amazon's S3 hosted storage service. The content network will deliver content from locations in three continents to reduce latency.

"Using a global network of edge locations this new service can deliver popular data stored in Amazon S3 to customers around the globe through local access," wrote Amazon CTO Werner Vogels in his blog.


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