Despite most users’ casual usage of cloud computing, every fraction of a second and every byte of data counts – especially when you’re dealing with big data systems, huge amounts of information and vast numbers of calculations. Amazon has a new on-demand instance feature for EC2 users to cater for big data users, called Dense Storage, or D2 for short. Rolling out around the regions, including South-East Asia, running from Singapore-based servers, it is ideal for cloud enterprise users.

AWS already has a range of compute options for users, ranging from micro use to medium or large compute. But the new D2 heads the class in power and pricing, costing up to $5.52 an hour for the top of the range unit. That thoroughbred features 36 virtual CPUs, 244 GiB of memory, 10 Gbps network performance and 3.5 MBps disk read performance. There are three lower-tier options if you don’t need quite that much horsepower, but users can place groups of these units together for maximum performance and speed to really crunch some numbers.

At the heart of the new instances are Intel Xeon E5–2676 v3 Haswell processors running from 2.4 GHz to 3 GHz with turbo boost, creating your own super Linux desktop in the cloud with high scalability and memory-optimised processing. Amazon reckons D2 instances are ideal for high-performance uses, such as massively parallel processing data warehouse tasks, MapReduce and Hadoop-based distributed computing, or log or data processing applications.

These services will become essential as the Internet of Things (IoT) and big data adoption take off. They will see even smaller businesses requiring access to massive processing power as millions of IoT devices start streaming data to servers, and owners or businesses need to see real-time dashboards or regular reports on the status and results from such devices. Smart cities will soon be powered by big data with both practical (i.e. traffic and resident health management) and executive (future strategy) decisions driven by the data as it comes in. Amazon will be looking to keep its place at the head of the market as more users come to rely on the cloud for these services.

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