Amazon.com subsidiary Amazon Web Services this morning unveiled a new product called CloudSearch, which basically lets clients integrate scalable search functionality into their websites and applications and ‘pay as they go’.
CloudSearch uses the same technology that makes searching on Amazon.com as fast as it is, and the new cloud-based managed search service costs a mere $0.12 per hour (or less than $100 per month) for basic usage. More on pricing below.
Amazon CTO Werner Vogels (who will be speaking at The Next Web Conference in two weeks) blogged about the new service here, and you can find the CloudSearch APIs documentation here. Bonus: demo video embedded below.
Basically, CloudSearch lets developers create a search domain, upload the data they want indexed, and the new service will then automatically provision the AWS technology resources required for search functionality.
Customers can upload data either through the AWS console, from command-line tools or by sending their own HTTP POST requests to the upload endpoint.
When more data becomes searchable, or query rates change, CloudSearch will automatically scale in real time, while customers also have the ability to modify parameters, finetune search relevance and apply new settings at any time, without having to upload the data again.
And, no need for devs to write their own indexing, query parsing, processing, results handling and whatnot.
Amazon also boasts that developers can thus have a scalable search system up and running in less than an hour at a minimal cost, taking advantage of “many years of Amazon R&D in the search space”.
Indeed, CloudSearch was developed by A9, the Amazon.com subsidiary that focuses on search technologies.
To learn more, the best place to start is AWS Evangelist Jeff Barr’s blog post.
Customers get billed based on the number of running search instances, which come at three sizes (Small, Large, and Extra Large) at prices ranging from $0.12 to $0.68 per hour. There’s also a “modest charge” for each batch of uploaded data ($0.98 for each GB of data in the search domain).
A number of AWS customers are already using CloudSearch, Amazon says. Some examples are Smugmug, which is using the new service to let users search over a billion photos on its website, and ex.fm, which is using CloudSearch to power its social music discovery website.