As I escaped the tedium of early morning traffic to slurp up some (free) wifi and (non-free) coffee beside the UK’s M1, Amazon’s Deepak Singh was winding down to the end of a day on Pacific Time with a tweet to announce the availability of Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) servers on this side of the Atlantic. European Elastic Compute Cloud, or E2C2, if you will.
Deepak pointed to an Amazon page, which briefly reported that;
“Developers and businesses can now run their Amazon EC2 instances in the EU to help achieve lower latency, operate closer to other resources like Amazon S3 in the EU, and meet EU data storage requirements when required. The new European Region for Amazon EC2 contains two Availability Zones enabling you to easily and cost effectively run fault-tolerant applications with the same scalability, reliability and cost efficiency achieved with Amazon EC2 in the US.”
Amazon CTO Werner Vogels and Evangelist Jeff Barr were close behind, using Twitter to share the same news, and pointing to longer blog posts on Werner’s blog and the Amazon Web Services Blog. A nice example of Twitter at work.
As for the news they were reporting; it’s good to see local availability for EC2 resources join the existing European sites for S3 storage.
Werner’s post outlines a three-part rationale for the move, broadly characterised as;
- lower latency (faster) access to the servers for customers in Europe,
- cheaper use of data stored in the European parts of S3,
- compliance with European regulatory requirements regarding storage of personal (and other) data outside Europe.
All are useful, and different customers will certainly emphasise each differently. I wonder which was the most commonly cited? ‘Compliance’ was a major stumbling block to using EC2 with certain data in the past, but I wonder if customers for whom that was an issue have traditionally been that important in the grand scheme of things at Amazon?
So; speed, price, or privacy?