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Ganesh Swaminathan
Ganesh Swaminathan

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AWS re:Invent 2020 announcements tl;dr

This article will be continously updated through re:Invent 2020 (which extends to Jan 2021) - pls bookmark and come back to it for updates!

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Why write a tl;dr - we can all read the announcements ourselves?

Following the RSS Feed of AWS "Recent Announcements" - there have been 143 individual announcements since re:Invent 2020 started... Even the slightly filtered "NEWS" feed has 55 items.

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Some are "this service is now available in this new region" or "We have 3 new digital training courses for snowcone" or services I do not personally care about (say "AWS Lumberyard" - what even is that!!)

So here is my own personal (biased) take of all the "KEY" announcements with a few lines on what it is. If nothing - this is a one pager just for my own reference with links to the launch announcements.


EC2 Mac Instances

Intel Mac Mini's in AWS's datacenter available to hire as baremetal for 24 hours at a go... Expensive unless you can justify it...

EC2 Instance type updates

Most instance type updates are usually faster / cheaper / burstier (on network / storage) - basically slam dunk updates

r5b instance type to run databases or similar RAM/IO heavy apps on EC2

c6gn instance type with new arm based AWS "Graviton" cpu's AND FAST networking (from 25gbps on smaller instance types to 100gbps on the largest)

m5zn instance type with "Fastest Intel Xeon Scalable CPU in the Cloud" upto 4.5ghz sustained all-core Turbo boost means one mean/fast cpu!

g4ad instance type with FAST AMD Graphics cards

AWS Lambda – 1ms Billing Granularity

down from 100ms - your $5 bill for lambda's may have dropped to $3...

6 vcpu's /10GB RAM for Lambda

give me moar! now more things running in fargate can start to move over..

Storage updates (EC2/EBS)

Storage types typically need careful matching to workload to ensure performance without added costs

Denser Storage d3/d3en

The key in the name!

gp3 storage volume

a new type of SSD EBS volume that lets you provision performance independent of storage capacity, and offers a 20% lower price than existing gp2 volume types - basically next gen cheaper / faster storage volumes

io2 block express

Even faster block storage with lower latency - maybe should have been called io3 to avoid confusion. Required reference : EBS Volume Types - since there are 2 HDD and 5 SSD types to choose from..

S3 Multi destination replication

Support combining single region or cross region replication (previously used to be one or other)

S3 Read-After-Write Consistency

The "underdog" of all announcements not even called out at re:Invent - this is crazy hard to do at scale and was released super quiet.


DevOps Guru

It's the 2020 version of "I am going to replace you with a small shell script". A new service to help detect and fix "Application" errors via automation which sounds very useful for reducing Ops.

CloudWatch Lambda Insights

Lots of these new "Insights" services from CloudWatch (Container insights was previous) - better observability of what Lambda's are upto

Analytics / Business Intelligence

Quicksight Q

Business Intelligence via natural language queries. (Definitely not a hardware device from Bond's Q or Q from Star Trek )

Customer Engagement

5 new services / announcements for AWS Connect

Contact Lens Realtime

Key is the "RealTime" bit - pickup immediately on "I am not happy - can I talk to your Manager" for example

Connect Wisdom

For example, when a customer calls a business about a defective washing machine, Amazon Connect Wisdom detects the reference to the washing machine model and presents the agent a suggested article on warranty claim procedures

Amazon Connect Customer Profiles

Link up to Customer profiles that may be in other systems (eg., Salesforce)

Amazon Connect Voice ID

Identify customers from their voice - a few banks have been trialling this on their call centres (voice recognition never seems to works for weird accents like mine)

Connect Tasks

Manage Tasks assigned to call centre agents (eg., call back customer with some update)


ECR Public Registry

AWS's replacement to Docker Hub (50gb free hosting + some other bandwidth limits...)

ECS Anywhere

EKS Anywhere

AWS Proton

Many organizations build their own "UI" that developers then use to deploy to AWS or combine some infrastructure as code tool with pipelines to handle their deployments. Proton is AWS's take on making this easier by providing a "framework" to create "Templates" and then manage their deployment and ongoing maintenance.

Package Lambda's as Container images

Why use small zip files when you can create a 10gb container! May help move "data" / Ml models / larger "layers" into Lambda since Lambda' have grown up (see above note on 6vcpu/10GB)


The same underlying distro used by AWS that anyone can run anywhere else (OR AWS could then run for you on-prem or on Azure Or on GCP - just saying!)


AWS Batch supports Fargate

No need to manage EC2 instances - just run batch jobs as Fargate tasks instead

Machine Learning

More details coming later today...

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