Article By Jeremy Wall
Amazon, the massively successful tech giant known for their electronic commerce and cloud computing, has finally broke into the blockchain industry with the launch of 2 Amazon blockchain products.
During Amazon’s reInvest 2018 conference in Las Vegas on Wednesday, Andy Jassy, the CEO of Amazon Web Services (AWS), announced the launch of 2 blockchain products: Amazon Quantum Ledger Database (QLDB) and Amazon Managed Blockchain.
This announcement comes as a surprise since AWS had dismissed the need to launch their own blockchain service a year back.
At the recent conference, Jassy touched on why the launch of a blockchain service didn’t come sooner:
We genuinely didn’t understand what the real customer need is [for blockchain], the culture inside AWS is we don’t build things for optics, we only spend the resources to build things when we really understand the problem.
Jassy explained that AWS spent a great deal of time speaking with hundreds of customers about what they wanted out of blockchain technology. In doing so, AWS discovered that organizations want to use blockchains over traditional databases because traditional databases can’t solve all their problems.
AWS also discovered two main reasonings why organizations were interested in the using blockchains over traditional databases, which led to their two blockchain products.
Amazon Quantum Ledger Database (QLDB)
The first business reason to use blockchains from AWS is organizations that want a ledger with a centralized trusted entity struggled with existing blockchain frameworks due to scaling issues and clarity with the existing frameworks.
Jassy explained that existing blockchain ledgers didn’t perform as well as they could because they were built to achieve consensus from various parties rather than a trusted centralized entity.
Therefore, to solve this problem, AWS created the Amazon Quantum Ledger Database (QLDB) to help customers conduct transactions with a centralized trusted entity. According to Jassy, QLDB is immutable, cryptographically verifiable, transparent, and very fast.
Further explaining the benefits of QLDB, Jassy said:
It will be really scalable, you’ll have a much more flexible and robust set of APIs for you to make any kind of changes or adjustments to the ledger database.
Amazon Managed Blockchain
The second reason for AWS offering their customers blockchain products is the need for organizations to conduct secure and decentralized transactions processing.
AWS’s new blockchain product, Amazon Managed Blockchain, will simplify this by running 2 of the most popular blockchain frameworks, Hyperledger Fabric or Ethereum. This product will allow customers to easily set up and manage a scaleable blockchain network for a fraction of the cost to create the network.
As stated on the product website:
Amazon Managed Blockchain eliminates the overhead required to create the network, and automatically scales to meet the demands of thousands of applications running millions of transactions.
Customers can use both blockchain products together with one another.
Amazon Managed Blockchain controls immutable replication of customers blockchain network activity with results stored in the QLDB. This allows customers to analyze fully the network activity from outside the network.
The launch of AWS’s blockchain products isn’t complete and members interested in these products can sign up to gain access once approved. To learn more about the blockchain products by AWS, see their website here.