Animoto: When scalability becomes a matter of prosperity or death

Animoto: When scalability becomes a matter of prosperity or death

Earlier we reported about Animoto, but that was before they launched their Facebook app. Werner Vogels, CTO Amazon is presenting at Next08 and started of by showing a short movie he made on Animoto followed by the Animoto fairytale.

Animoto was running on Amazon EC2 server and was using 50 servers when they had 25.000 users (note that their technology needs a lot of compute power). Probably most of you were already users then.

Now it becomes interesting. The day they launched their Facebook app, they signed up 25.000 new users per HOUR, resulting in the need of scaling to 3500 servers within 2 days. If it wasn’t for Amazon Animoto would have gone down and missed the million new users which would probably be the end of this great service.

I wonder how long it would take to call Dell, get the country manager on the line and negotiate a deal on buying 3500 new servers, meanwhile calling your local data center telling them you’re buying all their space immediately and order him to start building a new data center next to it…. I’m not sure but my guess is it takes more then two days and then I’m not talking about the costs of such a process and the opportunity costs of all those new Pro accounts.

Breaking news: Amazon invests in Animoto! Good call Jeff and Werner

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