Amazon reveals culture quirks, courts startups at AWS summit 2017


Day one of the AWS Summit in San Francisco, California, leaked some tips for tech companies deciding whether to join or fight the Amazon juggernaut. For competing cloud providers out to imitate Amazon Web Services, there was a glimpse into the culture that has made the company number one. For instance, Inc. revealed that its team writes the press release and the FAQ for a product before they write the code.

“That was as interesting as any of the product releases, because it almost told us how they keep the wheel spinning so fast,” said George Gilbert (@ggilbert41) (pictured, right), co-host of theCUBE, SiliconANGLE Media’s mobile live streaming studio. Gilbert agreed with co-hosts Jeff Frick (@JeffFrick) (pictured, left) and Lisa Martin (@Luccazara) (pictured, center) that this might explain why AWS products seem so tightly tailored to market demand.

Where Amazon perhaps must work on customer relations is in making its huge marketplace more manageable for them. The announcement of its marketplace expansion underscores this need for more arms to reach customers on their level, said Gilbert.

The AWS marketplace page lists 3,500 products from over 1,100 vendors. Therefore, “You can’t go to JP Morgan and say, ‘Here, go to town,'” said Gilbert. Dispatching systems integrator similar to IBM’s to configure business solutions would be a smart move for AWS right now, he said.

For now Amazon offers products that are ready or almost ready-to-go out of the box. There are signs these may soon include “semi-finished” machine learning applications trained on Amazon’s own data, according to Gilbert.

The AWS draw for startups

This includes data from across Amazon’s partner ecosystem, which is growing with companies that are all too happy to join Amazon for access to its customer base. “They are enabling businesses to be born that would never have gotten off the ground,” said Martin.

ThingLogix, Internet of Things experts, is a case in point. “They’re like 14 people and a couple of dozen developers that are attacking the IoT space,” said Frick. Without its partnership with AWS, it’s hard to tell whether anyone would know the company’s name today.

“They would never even get an approved vendor status at somebody like Boeing or GE,” Frick said, adding that startups might join Amazon as part of a solution or Service Integrator as an adjunct or as a standalone application.

Watch the complete video interview below, and be sure to check out more of SiliconANGLE’s and theCUBE’s independent editorial coverage of AWS Summit 2017 San Francisco.

Photo: SiliconANGLE