Amazon debuts blockchain network solution
AWS launches IoT competency test for partners
AWS launches IoT competency test for partners

Amazon debuts blockchain network solution

E-commerce giant Amazon has unveiled a new solution that allows users of its cloud computing platform to create and deploy secure blockchain networks.

Blockchain Templates is offered as an additional service for Amazon Web Services (AWS) and is powered by a range of open-source frameworks.

The service is positioned as a quick and easy way for companies and individuals to set up their own blockchain networks for a variety of purposes.

Open-source solution

With AWS Blockchain Templates, users are able to easily integrate Ethereum and Hyperledger Fabric frameworks into their cloud infrastructures, says the company.

According to Amazon, the templates “allow you to focus on building your blockchain applications instead of spending time and energy on manual setup of your blockchain network”.

Users have the option to set up their frameworks as containers on either an Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) cluster or an EC2 instance running the Docker platform.

“Your blockchain network is created in your own Amazon Virtual Private Cloud [VPC], allowing you to use your VPC subnets and network Access Control Lists,” explained the firm. “You can assign granular permissions using AWS IAM to restrict which resources an Amazon ECS cluster or Amazon EC2 instance can access.”

Anyone signed up for AWS can access the solution without any additional charge. Users only need to pay for the resources that they need to power their blockchain networks, and the templates are available in any region, said the company.

Popular tech

In recent times, Ethereum has emerged as one of the most popular open-source, distributed computing platforms. “You should consider using Ethereum if you would like to transact with peers on the public Ethereum network, want to build a new public network, or want to use Ethereum’s Solidity smart contract language,” said Amazon.

Created by the Linux Foundation, Hyperledger Fabric is another widely-used blockchain framework. It also allows users to develop blockchain applications, but comes with greater access control and data permissions functionality.

Amazon said firms should use Hyperledger Fabric if they “want to create a private blockchain network, or want to limit the transactions that each party can see”.

It describes blockchain as a technology that “makes it possible to build applications where multiple parties can record transactions without the need for a trusted, central authority to ensure that transactions are verified and secure”.

The firm added: “Blockchain enables this by establishing a peer-to-peer network where each participant in the network has access to a shared ledger where the transactions are recorded. These transactions are by design, immutable and independently verifiable.”

Internet of Business says

In 2017, Amazon claimed that AWS had over one million active customers, with known users including Adobe, Airbnb, Alcatel-Lucent, BMW, British Gas, Dow Jones, the European Space Agency, Financial Times, G4S, Kellogg’s, Lamborghini, NASA, Netflix, News International, Nokia, Philips, Samsung, SAP, Unilever, and the UK’s Ministry of Justice.

Amazon’s entry into the blockchain space, alongside IBM, will doubtless persuade many more organisations – of every size – to experiment with the technology. But it’s wise to remember that, as a distributed ledger system, blockchain isn’t suitable for many types of application, despite the claims made for it.

Read some of our recent reports for more information on this.

Coming soon: Our Internet of Supply Chain conference.