AWS opens London region for UK data centre clients
Wed 14 Dec 2016
Amazon Web Services, which already has over 100,000 customers in the UK taking advantage of its global infrastructure, has finally created a distinct UK presence with the opening of the AWS Europe (London) Region.
The new high availability region comprises two distinct geographic locations, known as Availability Zones, each complying with the United Kingdom’s Cyber Essentials Plus certification scheme. Additionally, AWS is providing UK clients with guidance on developing applications that accord with the National Cyber Security Centre’s UK Cloud Security Principles, and with the National Health Service (NHS) Information Governance Statement of Compliance (IGSoC) protocols.
The new zone offers native storage and processing opportunities for clients encumbered by national data governance mandates and regulations. New customers include healthcare delivery services provider Kainos Evolve, OakNorth and Travis Perkins, the largest provider of building materials in the country, which has migrated its entire data centre workload to AWS.
Additionally, the growing roster of AWS UK clients now includes Redcentric, an N3 commercial aggregator specialising in the provision of digital services across the National Health Service – a company which extends to expand its provisioning under UK AWS native availability.
AWS provides numerous Amazon CloudFront edge PoPs for UK clients seeking lower latency, though these zones are already part of the company’s 68 edge locations across Europe, Asia, Australia and North and South America.
AWS CEO Andy Jassy commented of the London launch “Our customers and APN Partners asked us to build an AWS Region in the UK, so they can run their mission-critical workloads and store sensitive data on AWS infrastructure locally,” and continued “A local AWS Region will serve as the foundation for even more innovative cloud initiatives from the UK that can transform business, customer experiences, and enhance the local economy.”
The move to native UK provisioning is part of a current trend for major tech players to invest in active presence in the UK. In September Microsoft began the roll-out of native Azure services to the UK, a process expected to be completed in 2017, and one which – intentionally or not – addresses some of the governance concerns which have arisen with the prospect of Britain’s exit from the European Union. However, AWS CTO Werner Vogels had already announced native UK data centre services in 2015, with AWS apparently on track to meet its promise of a complete and native cloud offering by Q2 2017.