Amazon Web Services (AWS), a cloud service provider, announced the completion of its deployment of AWS Local Zones in 16 cities in the United States, with expansion plans to bring AWS Local Zones into 32 new metropolitan areas in 26 countries globally – all of which are outside of the United States.

AWS Local Zones – Current Deployments and Expansion Plans

AWS Local Zones are an infrastructure deployment that places compute, storage, and database in close proximity to large population, industry, and IT centers, for applications that require <10 millisecond latency. Indeed, AWS Local Zones provide an alternative for customers that do not want to procure, operate, and/or maintain data center space – either on-premises or from third-party operators like Equinix and Digital Realty – in various metropolitan areas where they require resources. Instead, customers can connect to AWS Local Zones through an internet connection or use AWS Direct Connect to route traffic over a private Amazon Web Services (AWS) network connection.

Overall, most customers receive the necessary latency required to support their applications’ performance by running them in AWS Regions. Recall, that AWS Regions are geographic locations globally where AWS clusters data centers to serve customers in local AWS Availability Zones.

Importantly, AWS Local Zones allow customers to use core AWS services locally, while connecting to the rest of their workloads, which can sustain higher-latency, running in AWS Regions.

Current Deployments

Presently, AWS Local Zones are offered in the following 16 U.S. cities, which are grouped by geography:

  • Northeast: Boston, New York City, Philadelphia
  • Southeast: Atlanta, Miami
  • Midwest: Chicago, Kansas City, Minneapolis
  • Southwest: Dallas, Houston, Phoenix
  • West: Denver, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Portland, Seattle

Expansion Plans

Over the next two years, AWS Local Zones will expand into 32 new metropolitan areas in Africa, Asia-Pacific, Canada, Europe, and Latin America. Particularly, new AWS Local Zones will launch in:

  • Africa: Johannesburg, South Africa; and Nairobi, Kenya
  • Asia-Pacific: Auckland, New Zealand; Bangalore (Bengaluru), India; Bangkok, Thailand; Brisbane, Australia; Chennai, India; Delhi, India; Hanoi, Vietnam; Kolkata, India; Manila, Philippines; and Perth, Australia
  • Canada: Toronto, Ontario; and Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Europe: Amsterdam, Netherlands; Athens, Greece; Berlin, Germany; Brussels, Belgium; Copenhagen, Denmark; Helsinki, Finland; Lisbon, Portugal; Munich, Germany; Oslo, Norway; Prague, Czech Republic; Vienna, Austria; and Warsaw, Poland
  • Latin America: Bogotá, Colombia; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Lima, Peru; Querétaro, Mexico; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and Santiago, Chile

Customer Examples

AWS Local Zones serve latency-sensitive workloads, such as those for real-time gaming, graphic design, video streaming, and augmented & virtual reality. In many instances, these workloads have not been moved off-premises given historically lower performance (i.e., higher-latency) realized by leveraging cloud connectivity.

As such, AWS Local Zones are a solution to migrate these previously restricted workloads, which require <10 millisecond latency to the cloud. Additionally, using AWS Local Zones, customers have the ability to meet data residency requirements in regulated sectors like health care & life sciences, financial services, and government.

Below are select examples of customers and their use cases which require low-latency and scalable cloud resources, that can be delivered by AWS Local Zones:

  • Netflix: entertainment service’s original content production team generates high-quality visual effects and animations through their virtual workstations, powered by AWS Local Zones
  • Supercell: mobile game developer (e.g., Clash of Clans), which deploys game servers in multiple AWS Regions to serve end users globally. Also, Supercell uses AWS Local Zones in the United States
  • FOX Corporation: creator and distributor of entertainment, sports, and news content, which uses AWS Local Zones in close proximity to its production hubs and shoots
  • DISH Network: AWS is DISH’s preferred cloud service provider for building-out its Open RAN-based 5G network. Specifically, DISH is leveraging both AWS Local Zones and AWS Outposts, which allows the wireless carrier to push its 5G Core to the edge, enabling high performance across its service area
  • Nasdaq: as part of bringing its capital markets operations onto AWS’ cloud-based infrastructure, Nasdaq is establishing a private AWS Local Zone, available for Nasdaq’s use only, within its primary data center (Equinix NY11)

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