Traditionally, businesses have had to build and maintain infrastructure to run on-premises applications. With the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model, businesses can consume applications that are hosted online, enabling them to lower their costs by paying only for what they use, enjoy seamless and painless upgrades in functionality, and integrate easily with their existing data and systems.

Application providers who are building SaaS-based applications quickly learn that owning and operating the infrastructure on which these solutions are hosted can be expensive and complex, especially when customer demand is uncertain.

Whether you are an enterprise looking for a cloud environment in which to deploy your existing on-premises solutions, or an application vendor evaluating a cloud platform on which to deploy a new application or SaaS offering, you should consider the following questions:

  • Can I use the programming language and application platform of my choice?
  • Can I use the operating system and environment on which my existing applications are already deployed?
  • What commitments or contracts will my cloud provider require? Will I have to make an up-front investment?
  • How quickly can I respond to spikes and lulls in demand from my customers or application computing loads?
  • Does my cloud provider have experience in maintaining a global, redundant, and resilient infrastructure?
  • What security considerations has my cloud provider addressed?

Amazon Web Services (AWS) delivers reliable, scalable, and cost-effective computing resources on which to host your applications. You can use the following AWS components alone or combined to host your application(s):

Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2). Amazon EC2 provides resizable compute capacity in the cloud. You define your virtual Amazon EC2 environment with the operating system, services, databases, and application platform stack required for your hosted application. Amazon EC2 provides a full management console and APIs to manage your compute resources. Learn more »

Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3). Amazon S3 provides a simple web services interface to store and retrieve any amount of data, at any time, from anywhere on the web. It is durable, highly available, and secure. Amazon S3 also stores multiple redundant copies of your data. Learn more »

Amazon Relational Database Service (Amazon RDS). Amazon RDS makes it easy to set up, operate, and scale a relational database in the cloud. It provides cost-efficient and resizable database capacity while managing time-consuming database administration tasks. Learn more »

Amazon CloudFront. Amazon CloudFront provides a high performance, globally distributed content delivery system. Your application can use Amazon CloudFront to easily distribute or stream content to your users with low latency, high data transfer speeds, no commitments, and seamless integration with Amazon S3. Learn more »

Amazon Simple Queue Service (Amazon SQS). Amazon SQS provides a high performance, secure queuing system for your application that enables you to reliably distribute work between your application’s processes. Learn more »

Amazon DevPay. Amazon DevPay is a simple-to-use online billing and account management service that makes it easy for you to sell applications that are built in, or run on top of, Amazon Web Services. Learn more »

Amazon Mechanical Turk. The Amazon Mechanical Turk service is a marketplace for work and provides programmatic access to human intelligence. This service can be used to provide human judgment (for instance image tagging or data cleansing) on-demand, cost effectively and at any scale. Learn more »