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AWS announces new single-purpose on-prem hardware and tie-in storage tier

Cloud colossus has gone very niche with video-shifter

AWS has announced a very niche piece of on-prem tech and a related new cloud storage tier.

The new box is called the “AWS Elemental Link” and it has just one purpose in life: “a configuration-free, cost-efficient way to securely and reliably transfer video to MediaLive for delivery to viewers.”

MediaLive is AWS’ cloudy media coding and distribution service. The new box is controlled from the cloud and said to simplify the chore of getting video into MediaLive. Indeed, AWS says the device needs a source of video, an ethernet connection and power to work, and as it is pre-configured with details of buyers’ accounts should just start working. Power-over-ethernet is supported, so this can even be a two-cable job.

Three of the devices will fit into a single 1U slot on a standard 19-inch rack. They cost US$995 apiece.

The new storage tier is named “Elemental Media Store Infrequent Access”. Elemental Media Store is a storage service tailored to the needs of serving video. The new tier costs US$0.0125 per GB, rather lower than the Standard tier’s $0.023 per GB.

The Infrequent Access tier was added to give content outfits a cheaper option to host video as demand to view it decreases. AWS sets out a scenario whereby pricier storage is used during a live stream, before content is moved to a lesser tier for less-viewed content. Once material reaches the “long tail” phase of its life, Infrequent Access storage comes into its own.

While these devices won’t appeal to all Register readers, the fact that AWS has created on-prem hardware for a niche is noteworthy. Elemental Link may share a role of moving data into the cloud with Amazon’s other hardware but is very different to the storage-and-data-crunching-centric Snowball range and the hybrid-cloud-enabling Outposts. ®

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