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TheStreet Open House

Amazon Web Services Launches New Capabilities For Mobile Developers

Stock quotes in this article: AMZN

Amazon Web Services, Inc. (AWS), an Amazon.com company (NASDAQ:AMZN), today announced several new capabilities to make it easier for developers to build, deploy, and scale mobile applications. Amazon Cognito is a new service that provides simple user identity and data synchronization that lets developers create apps that authenticate users through popular public login providers, and then keep app data such as user preferences and game state synced between devices. The new Amazon Mobile Analytics service allows developers to easily collect and analyze app usage data, up to billions of events per day from millions of users, and delivers usage reports within an hour of data being sent by the app. AWS is also introducing a new unified Mobile Software Development Kit (SDK) that makes it easy for iOS, Android, and Fire OS developers to access the new Amazon Cognito and Amazon Mobile Analytics services as well as popular AWS services like Amazon S3 and Amazon DynamoDB. To get started with AWS Mobile Services, visit http://aws.amazon.com/mobile.

Today, many app developers around the world use the AWS Cloud as infrastructure building blocks for the back-end services that power their mobile applications. Still, these mobile app developers have had to spend valuable time on undifferentiated heavy lifting like connecting apps to storage and database services and integrating core functionality such as authentication, user management, notifications, and usage data analytics. With Amazon Cognito, Amazon Mobile Analytics, and the AWS Mobile SDK, developers are now able to focus more of their energy on what matters, the differentiated functionality of their app that attracts and retains end users.

With AWS Mobile Services, developers can:

  • Securely store, manage, and sync user identities and data (Amazon Cognito)

As more and more users utilize the same apps across various devices running different mobile platforms, developers often have to manage multiple user logins to securely store and retrieve data for their users, reconcile different versions of the data as devices go on and offline, and keep data in sync between devices. With Amazon Cognito, developers can incorporate these capabilities into their apps with just a few lines of code. Amazon Cognito lets developers build apps that allow users to start off as unauthenticated guests and then sign in with Amazon, Facebook, or Google. Amazon Cognito manages the complexity of keeping app data in sync on all devices associated with a user identity. Developers can also use Amazon Cognito’s client SDK to create a local data store, which caches user data on the device so that apps can keep working the same way regardless of whether the device is on or offline. Additionally, Amazon Cognito makes it simple to implement AWS security best practices (such as not embedding AWS credentials into source code) by providing a set of temporary, limited-privilege AWS credentials that developers can use to access AWS services such as Amazon Mobile Analytics, Amazon SNS, Amazon S3, or Amazon DynamoDB from their mobile app. Developers receive 10 GB of storage for synced data and one million sync operations per month for free for up to 12 months with the AWS Free Tier.

  • Quickly access and understand app usage data (Amazon Mobile Analytics)

Analytics such as how many users an app has, how much revenue it’s generating, and what a user is doing with the app are key to app developers. Amazon Mobile Analytics automatically provides this data to app developers without them doing any extra work. The service collects and visualizes mobile app usage data so that developers can understand user behavior and improve the customer experience for their apps. Amazon Mobile Analytics can collect and process billions of events per day from millions of users. It generates reports on active users, sessions, retention, in-application revenue, and custom events. Many mobile analytics solutions deliver usage data many hours after the usage happens. Amazon Mobile Analytics is designed to deliver usage reports within an hour of data being sent by the app so that developers can act on the data more quickly. All AWS customers can begin using Amazon Mobile Analytics at no charge and process up to 100 million events per month for free.

  • Easily connect apps to AWS services (AWS Mobile SDK)

The new AWS Mobile SDK supports iOS, Android, and Fire OS, giving developers an easy way to access AWS Mobile Services like Amazon Cognito, Amazon Mobile Analytics, and Amazon SNS Mobile Push. In addition, it also includes mobile connectors for AWS services such as Amazon DynamoDB (fast, fully managed NoSQL database service that is increasingly becoming the default choice for mobile apps), Amazon Kinesis (fully managed service for real-time processing of streaming data at massive scale that can collect data from mobile devices), and Amazon S3 (largest object storage service in cloud computing), to make them even easier to access with mobile devices and enhance them for mobile use cases by providing capabilities such as optimized network usage by batching data.

  • Send notifications, updates, and promotions across platforms (Amazon SNS)

Launched in August 2013, Amazon SNS Mobile Push provides customers around the world with a fully managed, cross-platform push notification service. Amazon SNS Mobile Push allows developers to easily send notifications to Apple iOS, Google Android, and Kindle Fire devices. Last month Amazon SNS enabled support for Baidu in China, as well as for Windows phone and desktop, and today is delivering messaging Time to Live. With Time to Live, Amazon SNS allows developers to set a time value of up to two weeks for time-specific app messages. If a message isn’t able to reach an app user’s device by the end of the time value, the message is not delivered since it is no longer relevant. Combined, these capabilities allow developers to reach a very broad user base from one single point without managing the complexity of integrating with multiple providers. All AWS customers can begin using Mobile Push for Amazon SNS at no charge and send up to one million notifications each month for free. After that, customers pay $.50 for every million messages published, and $.50 for every million messages delivered ($1.00 total per million push notifications).

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