Hello, Rob Harding (AWS Cloud Solution Architect) here at Wirehive. As you may know, AWS Reinvent 2020 kicked off a few weeks ago, and we at Wirehive were very excited by all the announcements coming out of this 3-week online extravaganza. As this event is now ending, I thought I would interview my peers in the AWS Wirehive team about what has been their highlights in this new conference format, in this strangest of strange years.

Sophie Dowsett-Smith (Account Manager)

“I can only pick one! Okay! Wirehive has been an AWS Well-Architected Partner and performed reviews for many clients over this last year. I was excited to see an expansion to the framework to include a SaaS (Software as a Service) lens. We work with all sorts of clients, and a significant number of them are providing some sort of SaaS to their end users. With this lens the AWS Pillars are going to be laser focused on achieving the optimal outcomes for their SaaS products against security, operational excellence, reliability, security and cost-optimisation."

Jon Totham (AWS Subject Matter Expert)

“I really liked the introduction of the EBS gp3 offering. Having the separation of IOPS (Input/Output Operations Per Second) from the amount of storage GB (Gigabytes), is something I can see our customers gaining massively from. Previously the storage and IOPS were bonded together so to receive the high IOPS requirements for a workload you would have to over spec the storage requirements and be left with 00’s or 000’s of GB that you would never use, but had to pay for. GP3 EBS volumes I am looking forward to rolling out to our customers as soon as possible, and it is great to see that AWS are still looking at unique ways to innovate their more traditional services!”

David Taylor (Finance Manager)

"For me it has got to be the announcement of the per millisecond billing that was announced for AWS Lambda. We are seeing a trend in our customers utilising more and more serverless technologies, so from the billing team this means our customers are paying for exactly what they are using. Previously if a Lambda function ran for 101 milliseconds, the time would be rounded up to the nearest 100 milliseconds, so 200 milliseconds would be billed for that function execution. Now our customers will be billed the exact 101 milliseconds. With those cost optimised features, operational expenditure is reduced, and our customers can reinvest into other awesome cloud projects.” 

James Ralph (New Business Development)

“Customers I talk to daily tell me that their most pressing business problem involves data in some way. Whether it is trying to understand and gain business value from the data that they currently hold, or to acquire more data to perform analysis with. The common theme is always the data. I enjoyed hearing that the Amazon QuickSight service now has a new capability called Amazon QuickSight Q. This is to bring Machine Learning utilising Natural Language capabilities to data sets. Our customers can now ask human conversation questions to the data such as “how much revenue was achieved for product X in the last quarter” and have QuickSights return with the correct data in well-presented graphs/tables. This is going to be game changing!” 

Paul Lettington (Infrastructure Manager)

“A major part of my role is debugging and analysing networking issues, it’s a common problem that never seems to go away! Seeing AWS bring operational tooling to the table in the form of the VPC Reachability Analyser looks to be a fantastic time saving tool. Networking can be a challenge especially in the abstracted work of cloud computing, so understanding where the issues lay quickly and seamlessly with a click of a button is going to make my day so much easier and resolve those networking complaints as quickly as possible!” 

Finally, my highlight of the conference has to be the introduction of Amazon Aurora Serverless v2 in preview. This is designed to be a major evolution in the Relational Database world, with a fully serverless offering, that has the capability to scale seamlessly to any fluctuation in demand.

V1 of the service was always seen as a test/development offering and not really used much in the market for production, however, AWS has really pulled out all on the stops on V2 to include a much richer set of features to complement it including:

  • Multi-AZ support
  • Global Databases
  • Read Replica endpoints

Wirehive have many AWS cloud consulting customers that use the traditional Aurora service, so when the Serverless v2 option goes to General Availability, I would not be surprised if we saw a number of our customers looking to upgrade to this. My thanks to the AWS Wirehive team for sharing their thoughts on their highlights from AWS Reinvent 2020. We wish you a very happy Christmas as we sign off the year!

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