UPDATED 02:48 EST / NOVEMBER 14 2019

AWS Data Exchange launches as an easier way to subscribe to third-party data

Amazon Web Services Inc. launched a new service Wednesday called the AWS Data Exchange, giving customers an easy way to find, subscribe and use data from outside sources.

Targeted at enterprises, academic institutions and scientific researchers, AWS Data Exchange is meant to remove some of the barriers they face when subscribing to third-party data. Those barriers including writing disparate application programming interfaces to access the data, waiting weeks to receive physical storage media, and managing billing and licensing agreements.

“Customers have asked us for an easier way to find, subscribe to, and integrate diverse data sets into the applications, analytics, and machine-learning models they’re running on AWS,” AWS Data Exchange General Manager Stephen Orban said in a blog post. “Unfortunately, the way customers exchange data hasn’t evolved much in the last 20 years. AWS Data Exchange gives our customers the ability to quickly integrate third-party data in the workloads they’re migrating to the cloud, while giving qualified data providers a modern and secure way to package, deliver, and reach the millions of AWS customers worldwide.”

More than 80 qualified data providers have signed up to the service as initial partners, including Reuters, Foursquare Labs Inc., Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltd. and Pitney Bowes Inc. Those partners will be able to use the service to provide data either free of charge or for a price, under specified terms of use. They can also provide data to individual customers with customized terms of use just for them.

AWS said the advantage for its partners is that they’ll be able to share their data without needing to worry about building and maintaining the computing infrastructure needed to store it, deliver it and bill customers.

AWS customers will be able to subscribe to various third-party data sets via the AWS Marketplace. Once subscribed, those customers can use the AWS Data Exchange API or AWS Console to send that data directly to Amazon Simple Storage Service, from where it can be analyzed.

Customers will be notified whenever a dataset is updated, so the new revision can be propagated to whatever applications, data lakes or machine learning models might be using it.

Photo: Tony Webster/Flickr

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