Amazon Web Services Wednesday made good on plans to support mobile app developers with new tools and an expanded SDK but more surprising, to me at least, was that it announced an aggressive push into enterprise document sharing and collaboration — news that should give long-time AWS customer Dropbox as well as Box and Google Drive something to ponder.
AWS Zocalo, running atop Amazon S3 storage, takes on those enterprise document sharing and collaboration products. Zocalo now in “limited preview” encrypts data in transit and at rest, said Amazon CTO Werner Vogels during an event in New York. Price is $5 per user per month for up to 200 GB of data, but WorkSpaces users get it for free. More here from Forbes.
“The feedback we got was that existing enterprise collaboration tools are way too complex so people end up collaborating over email which is a nightmare,” Vogels said. Gigaom Research analyst MSV Janakiram has written a good deep dive on Zocalo.
The nuts and bolts of the mobile services news include Cognito, a tool for managing user identities across many devices — Vogels called it a “fully managed identity service.” This would be helpful since a user often launches the same application from many devices. That poses a problem for developers who have to then manage multiple log-ins and securely store and retrieve data for that user.
Cognito, Amazon in said in its press release, will let developers “incorporate these capabilities into their apps with just a few lines of code” and also allow users to “start off as unauthenticated guests and then sign in with Amazon, Facebook, or Google.”
Amazon Mobile Analytics will provide developers data about how their app is performing and what tasks are popular among users (attention New Relic, AppDynamics) and an updated mobile SDK promises to make all those new goodies, plus access to existing services like DynamoDB and Kinesis, readily available to mobile developers.
This story was updated several times throughout the AWS Summit event.