Amazon (AMZN) said today that its S3 utility storage service now holds more than 10 billion objects, meaning that S3 has doubled in size since its April announcement that it had reached 5 billion objects. Amazon said that more than 290,000 developers have signed up to use AWS since its launch in March 2006.
The company also announced that it was expanding S3 to allow customers to store objects on the company’s infrastructure in Europe, a development that could broaden international adoption of the service.
S3 is a “cloud” storage service offering scalable storage infrastructure, with fees based on usage. It has been widely used by Web 2.0 providers such as the photo sharing service SmugMug, which said S3 helped it save $1 million over the course of a year. The service, along with Amazon’s EC2 cloud computing offering, has had periodic performance issues, leading Amazon to offer a service level agreement (SLA) last month.
The location of data centers is an important issue in storage, as many countries have regulatory guidelines mandating that companies store customer data within their borders. This was a factor in storage specialist Iron Mountain’s decision to open new data centers in Canada. A number of European countries have similar guidelines.
“Since the U.S. launch of Amazon S3, developers in Europe have asked us to add the ability to store data in Europe,” said Adam Selipsky, Vice President of Product Management and Developer Relations for Amazon Web Services. “They wanted the same high quality, low cost service, but with lower latency and local data storage. We’ve been working hard to make this a reality and are excited to offer Amazon S3 from European datacenters.”
Martin Gill, Head of New Media for Comic Relief, said S3’s “enormous scalability, combined with the legal benefits of holding data and assets within the EU, makes the European storage of Amazon S3 a brilliant early Christmas present for us.” Comic Relief will use S3 to support its fundraising efforts in the UK.