Today, we’re going to look at 10 interesting, yet not commonly known, AWS services and products. Amazon offers more than 70 unique services, so we can’t blame you if you’ve not heard of them all! These services and products span across many different categories such as storage, compute, artificial intelligence, game development, and business productivity. Even if you’re an experienced AWS user, there’s always more to learn.
1. AWS Batch
AWS Batch offers the ability to run batch computing jobs in the cloud. AWS Batch offers features such as priority-based job scheduling, fine-grained access control, and integrated monitoring and logging. Jobs can be added by using the AWS CLI tool, SDK or the web console. You have full control when adding a job, and you can control the hardware such as vCPU and memory.
For example: AWS lists one of its use cases for financial services: post-trade analytics
You can automate the analysis of the day’s transaction costs, execution reporting, and market performance.
Official Page: https://aws.amazon.com/batch/
2. Amazon Lumberyard
Amazon Lumberyard is a free AAA game engine that is integrated into the AWS cloud. It also integrates with the Twitch platform which can create a great connection with the online community of streamers and game watchers. It can be used by small indie developers to large agencies. It’s been used to create games such as Star Citizen, Breakaway and New World.
Category: Game Development
Official Page: https://aws.amazon.com/lumberyard/
3. Amazon Polly
Amazon Polly is one of the latest services AWS has added to their Artificial Intelligence lineup. Amazon Polly allows you to turn text into lifelike speech. Amazon Polly uses advanced techniques such as deep learning to create a number of voices that support a number of languages. Amazon Polly offers an API that requires a text input and returns a stream of audio.
For example: With Amazon Polly, you can read your RSS feed, news, or email, and store synthesized speech in the form of audio files.
Category: Artificial Intelligence
Official Page: https://aws.amazon.com/polly/
4. Amazon AppStream 2.0
Amazon AppStream 2.0 is a service that allows you to stream desktop applications from AWS to a device running an HTML5 compatible web browser. AppStream 2.0 pricing is charged at a ‘pay as you go’ rate, so you’re only charged for what you use. There are no hidden fees, upfront costs, or infrastructure costs. In addition, AppStream 2.0 can interact with your other AWS services such as your VPC. It offers features such as HTTPS support, multiple regions across the globe, and persistent file storage.
For example: Organizations can use Amazon AppStream 2.0 to deliver Windows desktop applications securely to any device running a browser. Users get access to their applications anytime they need, on the device of their choice.
Category: Desktop and App Streaming
Official Page: https://aws.amazon.com/appstream2/
5. AWS Snowmobile
AWS Snowmobile allows you to move large amounts of data to AWS – “large” meaning exabyte scale. A ‘Snowmobile’ allows you to move up to 100 Petabytes at a time. Snowmobile is a physical service offered by AWS. A truck will arrive at your data center to transfer your data from the hardware, transport it back to an AWS location, and import it into the S3 or Glacier services. There are many features, such as fast data transfer, 256-bit encryption, 24/7 video surveillance, GPS tracking, and alarm monitoring.
Official Page: https://aws.amazon.com/snowmobile/
6. AWS Shield
AWS Shield is a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) protection service used to protect web applications. It can be used with other AWS services such as Amazon Route 53 (DNS) and Amazon CloudFront (CDN). AWS Shield is offered in two tiers – Advanced and Standard. The advanced tier focuses on protection for large DDoS attacks and it offers 24/7 access to DDoS experts for specific cases. The standard tier is focused on general protection and smaller DDoS attacks.
Category: Security, Identity and Compliance
Official Page: https://aws.amazon.com/shield/
7. Amazon Connect
Amazon Connect is a cloud-based contact center. It allows you to easily create and manage a contact center, the same as the ones used by AWS customer service associates. It offers features such as real-time metrics, high-quality audio, and integrations into customer relationship management (CRM) systems such as Zoho. Pricing is flexible, with no upfront cost or long-term commitments. Prices are calculated based on minutes used, as well as any extra services used in combination.
Category: Contact Center
Official Page: https://aws.amazon.com/connect/
8. Amazon WorkMail
Amazon WorkMail is one of several business productivity services available on AWS. WorkMail is managed business email with calendar features. WorkMail integrates with the iOS mail app, native Android mail app, Microsoft Outlook, web browser, or any other application that supports IMAP. WorkMail offers features such as virus/spam protection, desktop support, mobile support, large mailboxes, active directory integration, and enterprise-grade security.
Category: Business Productivity
Official Page: https://aws.amazon.com/workmail/
9. AWS X-Ray
The AWS X-Ray service is part of the developer tools product category. X-Ray gives developers more insight into their applications, with features such as debugging, identification of performance bottlenecks, and edge case errors. X-Ray offers features such as end-to-end tracing, data annotation / filtering, server-side / client side latency detection and simple set up. Added X-Ray to your application is as simple as using the SDK and installing the X-Ray agent. Pricing is recorded on a trace scale, you pay per a set amount of traces but get the first 100,000 free per month. A trace is essentially a request in your application such as a call to a database.
Here is how AWS X-Ray works-
Category: Developer Tools
Official Page: https://aws.amazon.com/xray/
10. AWS IoT Platform
The AWS IoT platform is a cloud platform that can handle billions of connected devices and trillions of messages. It allows easy integration with AWS services such as S3, Amazon Machine Learning, and Amazon Kinesis. The AWS IoT platform allows you to easily communicate with all of your devices. Pricing comes in two forms – publishing cost and delivery cost. A publishing cost is incurred when a message is published to the IoT platform. A delivery cost is incurred when a message is delivered from the IoT platform to devices or applications.
Category: Internet of Things
Official Page: https://aws.amazon.com/iot/
AWS has come a long way
We all know about EC2, S3, and the other popular AWS services, but Amazon Web Services offers much more than just basic computing and storage. It really has come a long way as a platform.
In this post, we discovered 10 uncommon products and services available on the Amazon Web Services platform. If any of these caught your eye, you might want to check out the AWS products page to see if there are other services that you can use in your business, application, or infrastructure. You might just find something new!
Which AWS or Cloud services do you think are underrated? Share them in the comments below!
Check out the AWS courses that are included with the free community membership in October: