AWS Open Source Blog

AWS Joins the GraphQL Foundation

September 8, 2021: Amazon Elasticsearch Service has been renamed to Amazon OpenSearch Service. Visit the website to learn more.

We are excited to announce that AWS is now part of the GraphQL Foundation, and we can’t wait to help the Foundation build an open and vibrant GraphQL community. Let me explain why this is so important for Amazon, AWS customers, and me personally.

When Amazon moved from a monolithic architecture to small, autonomous teams, we learned the value of good APIs. Good API design is not just a matter of lip service here: it’s encoded in one of our Leadership Principles, Invent and Simplify, which states that we are “externally aware, look for new ideas from everywhere, and are not limited by ‘not invented here.'” Many product teams across Amazon, such as Twitch and Goodreads, rely on GraphQL to deliver simple, friendly, and powerful APIs. There are many more internal GraphQL use cases, and thousands of customers running GraphQL workloads on AWS.

But GraphQL is just one ingredient in the recipe for great applications. At AWS, we noticed that customers who use GraphQL ask the same questions about scaling, real-time updates, offline data access, and integration with other AWS services. That’s why we built AWS AppSync, a managed GraphQL service for application data, and the Amplify Framework, an open source library and CLI for building sophisticated cloud-powered apps.

“GraphQL is a foundational technology for building APIs that empower front-end developers to deliver the best user experience for their customers. With AWS AppSync and the Amplify Framework, AWS is enabling developers to build and run critical GraphQL workloads at scale, and we are excited to join the Foundation to support and grow the GraphQL community.” – Adrian Cockcroft, Vice President of Cloud Architecture Strategy, AWS

With the Amplify CLI, you can launch a scalable GraphQL API and generate data types for iOS, Android, and web (Typescript or Flow) in minutes. Adding custom authentication and authorization logic is simple, and your API automatically supports real-time updates via GraphQL Subscriptions. GraphQL APIs powered by AWS AppAsync seamlessly integrate with Amazon DynamoDB, Amazon Aurora Serverless, Amazon Elasticsearch Service, and AWS Lambda.

At AWS, we strive to make open source technology more accessible to everyone. For GraphQL, this means that we will share the lessons we’ve learned from building AWS AppSync and the Amplify Framework, and in turn learn from the community how to deliver great developer experiences with GraphQL.

I’m excited and optimistic about this partnership for personal reasons as well. During my time at Facebook, I worked on the GraphQL team, where our philosophy was: make experimentation easy and prove that new features are valuable at scale before formalizing them. Imagine the size of my smile when I discovered how AWS operates!

When we initially formed the GraphQL Working Group at Facebook, we wanted to build an open and neutral process for evolving GraphQL. I’m confident that the GraphQL Foundation is the best way we can achieve these goals and I feel incredibly fortunate to have a role at AWS where I can work closely with the GraphQL community, AWS service teams, and GraphQL users across Amazon. I could not be more excited about our decision to join the GraphQL Foundation, and I can’t wait to see what we’ll accomplish together.

You can follow news and announcements from the GraphQL Foundation here.

Robert Zhu

Robert Zhu

Robert Zhu is a Principal Developer Advocate at Amazon Web Services. He focuses on APIs, Web, Mobile, and Gaming. Prior to joining AWS, he worked on GraphQL at Facebook. While at Microsoft, he worked on the .net Framework, Windows Server, and Microsoft Game Studios. In his spare time, he loves learning about history, economics, and psychology. You can reach him @rbzhu on twitter or directly via telepathy.