Amazon Puts Bulk E-Mail In The Cloud With Amazon SES


Amazon Web Services has planted itself into the bulk e-mail game with the launch of Amazon Simple E-mail Service (SES) to give developers and businesses that don't want to build in-house e-mail systems a way to send massive volumes of bulk marketing and transactional e-mail.

Amazon SES integrates with Amazon's other cloud computing products, like Amazon EC2 and Amazon S3, it's storage service. And while Amazon SES is free, Amazon charges fees for the number of e-mails sent -- 10 cents per 1,000 e-mail messages sent -- plus data transfer charges. However, Amazon said users can send 2,000 e-mail messages daily for free if those e-mails originate from Amazon EC2 or AWS Elastic Beanstalk, Amazon's new developer platform to deploy and manage applications into the cloud, though data transfer fees may apply if the AWS free monthly bandwidth allowance is exceeded. Amazon said Amazon SES requires no long-term commitment or minimum spend.

"With Amazon SES, businesses no longer have to worry about the details of building and maintaining their own e-mail-sending solution or negotiating and paying for expensive outside e-mail services. Instead, they can focus on improving customer communication and reducing costs," said Adam Selipsky, AWS vice president, in a statement.

The new Amazon cloud-based e-mail service leverages an API call that gives users access to an e-mail infrastructure to communicate to customers. Amazon SES uses content filtering to scan outgoing e-mail messages to ensure the content meets ISP standards. Messages can be queued for sending or routed back to the sender for corrective action. The Amazon SES e-mail service also notifies users of bounce backs, failed e-mails, successful delivery attempts and spam complaints, Amazon said.

The Amazon SES service should not be confused with consumer and business e-mail systems, like Google Gmail and Microsoft Windows Live Hotmail. Instead, it is aimed at businesses blasting large volumes of bulk e-mail messages to customers, clients and contacts. Amazon SES would compete more closely with Constant Contact, iContact and other marketing e-mail generators.

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