Amazon recently announced that it will be opening a new cluster of data centers in South Korea in early 2016. Amazon Web Services, the company’s cloud computing division, is already a giant in the business of renting data storage and computing power. Pioneering this industry, Amazon, together with another Greater Seattle tech giant, lead the way in providing this type of infrastructure technology. Their cloud computing provides services to data intensive companies such as Netflix and Pinterest.
These data centers, or “regions” as Amazon calls them, are huge investments, estimated by analysts to cost hundreds of millions of dollars. However, this capital expense is made in response to large scale demand. Amazon says that its customers like Samsung Electronics Co. and various gaming companies requested local options for storing data. Additionally, the move by Amazon Web Services will introduce new customers to the company. Many nations require that certain sensitive information, such as health records, not leave their originating country. This type of expansion will allow Amazon to capitalize on the potential business of companies handling this type of information, both in South Korea and in other regions where similar centers have been established. The increased proximity to customers will also allow for faster response times in running Internet-based cloud applications.
The new data centers in South Korea will be the fifth in Asia and the twelfth globally for Amazon Web Services. There are also plans of building data centers in China and India in the future.