Today, Martin Geier, Managing Director AWS Germany and Andy Jassi, SVP AWS, announced the immediate availability of the 11th AWS region: EU (Frankfurt).
The new region has two availability zones, eu-central-1a and eu-central-1b.
At the press conference Andy Jassy mentioned three key reasons for launching a new AWS region in the EU and particularly in Germany:
- AWS currently serves thousands of customers in Germany that today are mostly using the AWS zone in Ireland but want to be able to connect to a zone closer to home as well
- AWS European customers have been asking for more zones within the EU region to be able to spread capacity across geographically dispersed EU zones.
- AWS business in Europe is growing dramatically and AWS needed another region to cope with demand. Frankfurt is a great place for a new AWS EU region because of the close proximity of the German Commercial Internet Exchange, one of the largest exchange points in the world.
Andy also made specific statements about AWS security capabilities and AWS treatment of data sovereignty squarely aimed at the sceptic German market:
- Security is AWS number one priority and we are better than on premise
- Customers own their own data. Data will not move out of an AWS region unless customers move it. Customers (should) encrypt their data, we only see a blob.
- On data sovereignty: AWS only responds to court orders. AWS challenges overreaching court orders. If a court order is legally binding and not overreaching, AWS first inform the customer before it does anything else.
On the last point, those that are extremely sceptic – and there are more of those in Germany than anywhere else in Europe – will counter that AWS will have to comply with NSA gag orders.
The German market is notoriously distrustful of cloud computing and AWS is doing all it can to convince German enterprises (the largest enterprise IT market in Europe) to switch to AWS. The availability of a new German AWS region will convince many that the AWS cloud is a viable alternative to on premise. However, many customers, when ready to move applications to the cloud, will continue to demand a German cloud, in a German data center, operated by a German company.