Amazon Cloudfront: Here to Make Downloads Fast and Cheap

Amazon Cloudfront: Here to Make Downloads Fast and Cheap

Amazon web services have just announced a new addition to their line of services and its a new content delivery network called CloudFront. The service will help websites, big and small, improve their download speeds at a cheaper cost and as with it’s other offerings, Cloud Front is pay as you go and will be particularly atractive for smaller sites out there. One of the most exciting aspects of the announcement, for the average internet user, is that we we could end up with a generally much faster internet.

What exactly is CloudFront?

CloudFront is a content delivery network (CDN) similar to the networks that large sites such as the iTunes store would use to ensure downloads are immediate and fast.

How does does it work?

Well, CloudFront lets your customers download your website’s content from a location generally nearer to them, therefore greatly increasing the performance of your website.

You may wonder why this hasn’t been happening all along, well the answer is that CDN’s are not cheap but if you’re a company like Amazon with S3 backing – you are able to offer the service at a much cheaper price. CloudFront competitors aren’t twiddling their thumbs however, Limelight is cutting prices and Akamai is aggressively leveraging its patents on CDN technology to keep ahead of the competition.

Startups such as Woot and Playfish, have already begun using the service with Luke Duff, Retail IT Director at Woot, claiming amusingly that he “can feel the rage melting away” thanks to CloudFront!


Just like other Amazon Web Services (and unlike some other content delivery services that have up-front costs), CloudFront is entirely pay as you go. Cost varies by location, with prices cheaper in the United States than elsewhere. Pricing is also more expensive if less data is transferred. In the United States, CloudFront is priced at 17 cents per gigabyte up to 10 TB, but 9 cents per gigabyte after the first 150 TB of bandwidth has been used. The most expensive location to cache data is Japan, which starts at 22 cents per gigabyte for up to 10 TB of data transfer.

Sound like something you could be interested in trying out? Stop by Amazon CloudFront for more details

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