Amazon Web Services Extends EC2 To Europe

Amazon Web Services, the hosted application environment from, announced the availability of the Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) in Europe. Having Amazon EC2 in Europe will mean developers and businesses can build applications and websites on the EC2 platform with less latency, as computational data will not have to travel across the Internet as a part of the workload.

Cloud Computing with Amazon

Amazon EC2, for those unfamiliar, is a computing environment that allows you to run your applications on Amazon's server environment. This means a business can utilize Amazon's data center and fore go having to set up their own server farm and online presence. With EC2, you only pay for the services you use and there is no minimum charge each month.

Up until this point in time, Amazon EC2 has been available to businesses in Europe, but the data services that were geographically located in North America. Elastic Compute Cloud joins Amazon's online-storage system S3 on the European continent.

European customers, at this time, won't have support for Windows Server and SQL Server (which was just introduced in Beta in the US), but this functionality is said to be coming to the EU soon.

Expanding the Service Offering

According to The Register, Amazon wanted to have their storage infrastructure in place before offering the Amazon EC2 service. Also, having the server systems (EC2) in close proximity to the European S3 server farms has become a highly-requested service from customers.

According to Peter De Santis, GM of Amazon EC2, global companies want to have their assets located worldwide. He expanded:

“We are very excited to fulfill one of our top user requests by launching Amazon EC2 in Europe.  In conjunction with Amazon S3 and Amazon CloudFront in the EU, Amazon Web Services customers can now locate their storage, distribution, and compute in Europe, better allowing them to achieve low latency to their European customers and to meet EU data storage requirements when applicable.  Starting today, businesses needing globally distributed infrastructure can easily manage and deploy their storage and compute with a simple, powerful set of web service APIs and tools.”

What EC2 Costs To Use in Europe

While data transfer feeds cost the same in the EU as in the United States, EC2 customers will be charged about a penny more per hour when using EC2 in Europe. According to Amazon, this is because running data centers in the EU is more costly than running them in the States. The cost breakdown is below:

Instances (Linux/UNIX)

Standard (per instance hour consumed)

  • $0.11 for small instances

  • $0.44 for large instances

  • $0.88 for x-large instances

High CPU (per instance hour consumed)

  • $0.22 for medium instances

  • $0.88 for x-large instances

Data Transfer

  • $0.10 per GB - all data transfer in

  • $0.17 per GB - first 10 TB / month data transfer out

  • $0.13 per GB - next 40 TB / month data transfer out

  • $0.11 per GB - next 100TB
  • $0.10 per GB – over 150TB

Amazon's Opportunity to Increase Cloud Market Share

It is exciting to see Amazon Web Services acknowledging the need to carry their service worldwide by expanding to Europe. Much of the world's technological industries are located in the EU and having Amazon as a delivery mechanism will be fuel to many start-ups who may want to use AWS as a vehicle for going to market.

Amazon Web Services provides a cost effective and highly scalable solution for entrepreneurs, technologists and developers to power their services.