Your AWS re:Invent 2019 Recap

Author:
Jackson Lucas Cloud Tech Journalist
Published: December 08, 2019
5 Min Read

With over 65,000 attendees in Las Vegas, this year’s re:Invent was the biggest AWS event to date. This year’s theme was transformation—something that found its way into every keynote, product workshop, and learning lab throughout the week. 

To read the full recap of Andy Jassy’s keynote from this year’s re:Invent, click here

We’ve recapped some of the week’s biggest announcements, and included an opportunity for you to learn how these new products and services impact your cloud strategy from some of the industry’s top thought leaders. 

Great news for Fargate lovers

Since its release, AWS Fargate has seen exponential growth in adoption—over 40% of new AWS container users start their container journey with Fargate according to AWS CEO Andy Jassy. What’s driving this adoption? Fargate allows developers to focus on what they love—building applications—while removing some of their biggest headaches (the need to provision and manage servers). 

Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (EKS) on AWS Fargate (now GA)

Customers can now start using Amazon EKS to run Kubernetes pods on AWS Fargate. Together, these two services make it straightforward to run Kubernetes-based applications on AWS by removing the need to provision and manage infrastructure for pods. You can learn about Amazon EKS on AWS Fargate here. 

Getting the best of both worlds

Previously, developers had to choose between the agility and speed of containers and the security and workload isolation available with virtual machines. Enter Firecracker, a new product that offers customers the best of both worlds. Firecracker is an open-source virtualization technology that is purpose-built for creating and managing secure, multi-tenant container and function-based services. 

With Firecracker, customers can deploy workloads in lightweight, micro-virtual machines (which offer enhanced security and workload isolation over traditional VMs), while enabling the speed and resource efficiency of containers. You can learn more about Firecracker here

The spotlight shines on Machine Learning 

Not to be overshadowed by advancements in containers and compute, machine learning was a big focus at re:Invent this year, finding its way into a large chunk of Andy Jassy’s keynote Tuesday morning and in numerous breakout sessions and workshops throughout the week. 
Amazon SageMaker Studio, which looks to overhaul the entire machine learning development process (more on that below) was one of the most talked-about announcements of the week. Also announced were two other unique machine learning services: Amazon Kendra and Amazon CodeGuru

Amazon Kendra is a new highly accurate and easy to use enterprise search service powered by machine learning. Kendra provides a more intuitive way to search and discover information stored within the vast amount of content spread across your organization. 

Amazon CodeGuru is aimed at helping developers write and commit code with minimal errors. CodeGuru pulls and reviews code to provide an assessment that, among other things, can detect anomalies, concurrency issues, and incorrect inputs. This announcement created a lot of buzz in the developer community (I’m looking at you, QA team), for its ability to flag some of your most expensive lines of code. 

Amazon SageMaker Studio 

Amazon SageMaker Studio is the first fully integrated development environment (IDE) for machine learning and aims to tackle the very iterative and challenging ML development workflow developers struggle with today. With these SageMaker announcements, managed ML services are closer than ever before. 

Amazon SageMaker studio unifies all the tools needed for ML development, allowing developers to write code, track experiments, visualize data, and perform debugging and monitoring all within a single, integrated visual interface—significantly boosting developer productivity. You can learn more about Amazon SageMaker Studio here. 

Including in this (huge) announcement are numerous sub-announcements, including: 

Let’s talk about Partners  

Launched in 2012, the AWS Partner Network (APN) helps companies, build, market, and sell their AWS offerings by providing valuable business, technical, and marketing support. Today, the APN has grown to tens of thousands of partners—with more than 50 new partners being added every day. 

At this year’s Global Partner Summit Keynote, Head of AWS Worldwide Channels and Alliances Doug Yeum focused on three areas of AWS investment aimed at supporting the growth and success of the APN:

  1. AWS Innovation: new AWS services lead to more opportunities for the APN to support their clients and help them take advantage of new AWS offerings. 
  2. Geographic Expansion: more regions (see AWS Local Zones) bring AWS services closer to AWS users and their customers, wherever they are in the world. 
  3. Enterprise Migration: large organizations migrating to the cloud frequently turn to the APN for help (an opprotunity ripe for the APN's taking).

During the partner keynote, Yeum announced the APN Global Startup Program, a new program that helps startups become enterprise-ready via prescriptive benefits and a simplified path to meeting foundational requirements for the APN. Yeum was joined by Dave McCann, VP of AWS Marketplace, where McCann announced changes to the Marketplace that better support partners, including the announcement of Seller Private Offers, Discovery API, and more. 

Other buzzwords that are important (hello 5G)

Aside from containers and machine learning, there were also numerous announcements around databases, security, compute, and storage. Some of the biggest announcements from the show included the delivery on a promise Jassy made this time last year (AWS Outposts is now GA!), an enormous partnership with Verizon to push the boundaries of 5G (see the announcement of AWS Wavelength), and a look at a new type of AWS infrastructure deployment that will deliver single-digit millisecond latency to users in large metropolitan cities (se the announcement of AWS Local Zones). 

For a more in-depth look at these announcements, including how these new products and services are going to shape the cloud industry, join our product experts for a re:Invent 2019 recap webinar. Learn more about how to accelerate your AWS cloud journey here.

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BETTER Headshot Jackson Lucas
Jackson Lucas, Cloud Tech Journalist

Jackson is an avid storyteller and currently reports on cloud industry news, documents cloud best practices, and helps organizations tackle their biggest cloud management challenges. While you may know him for his contributions to the CloudHealth blog, Jackson also focuses on retelling VMware's complex product narratives, and has written many of the webpages you see across the CloudHealth site today.

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