Amazon Boosts Cloud Computing Support, Cuts Price


Cloud provider Amazon Web Services (AWS) has launched a pair of new support plans, a move that signals AWS is looking to storm the enterprise while boosting competition with other cloud providers like Rackspace.

AWS also cut overall cloud computing support prices and guaranteed faster response when cloud support is needed.

First, AWS launched a Platinum cloud computing support plan for enterprises, which is priced at 10 percent of their AWS usage with a $15,000 monthly minimum. The Platinum tier makes it clear that Amazon has its sights set on being the cloud provider of record for large enterprises. Amazon's bid to bring AWS and its Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) offerings into the enterprise and offering a new tier of enterprise support shows that AWS is ready to battle with Rackspace and cloud providers for enterprise cloud deals.

Additionally, the computing powerhouse on Thursday launched a new Bronze support plan aimed at individual developers that runs $49 per month. The new Bronze plan gives users access to the Web-based ticketing system available in the Silver, Gold and Platinum plans. Users can submit trouble tickets for AWS APIs and AWS Infrastructure and expect a response within 12 business hours for normal tickets or one day for low-priority tickets.

Meanwhile, the Platinum enterprise plan bests the existing Gold plan with the assignment of a named Technical Account Manager (TAM) to an enterprises account, Amazon said. Trouble tickets will receive "white-glove" routing and jump ahead of queued tickets. And support staff will respond to critical tickets within 15 minutes and urgent tickets within an hour.

"Your TAM will work with you to conduct reviews of your AWS usage and performance on a regular basis, and they'll also help to ensure that you are ready for new launches. They'll even be available to participate in meetings as you request. You'll also get guidance on best practices and on the use of new AWS features. You will have access to our team of Solution Architects for guidance during complex implementations," AWS wrote in a blog post highlighting its new cloud computing support offerings.

Along with launching a pair of new cloud computing support plans, AWS also slashed usage-based pricing for the existing Silver and Gold plans by 50 percent. While the minimum costs remain the same, $100 per month for Silver and $400 per month for Gold, the usage-based fees have dropped from 10 percent of usage to 5 percent for Silver cloud computing support and from 20 percent to 10 percent for Gold plan users. Gold support plans also offer further percentage reductions, down to 5 percent as AWS usage grows. For example, if usage exceeds $80,000 per month, Gold support drops to 5 percent.

The reduced pricing and new support options puts AWS in a strong position against key cloud provider rival Rackspace, which offers basic service options like chat, phone and ticket support for free with its Cloud Servers offering and adds additional support at a cost with Cloud Servers with a Managed Service Level.

Amazon has also reduced the maximum initial response time for normal severity cases from 24 business hours to 12 and for low severity cases from 48 business hours to 24 business hours.

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