Amazon Web Services, the cloud division of Amazon.com, is considering the possibility of constructing data centers in South Africa.
The cloud computing firm may look to build its own data center infrastructure in the country, following the launch of its AWS Direct Connect service in Johannesburg and Cape Town this week, according to Techcentral.
Cloud computing technology allows for storing and accessing of data and software over the internet rather than a particular computer hard drive, with applications for Africans spanning across entrepreneurship, education, government and various other fields.
South African companies will be able to benefit from the Direct Connect service by establishing a dedicated network connection to Amazon Web Services.
Amazon Web Services vice president and global head of infrastructure, Peter Desantis explained the advantages of the AWS Direct Connect service, while alluding to the fact that the company will likely invest in South African data centers in the near future.
“Having AWS Direct Connect in the country allows customers based in South Africa to have dedicated, reliable and high-bandwidth connectivity to the Amazon Global Network, bypassing the public Internet,” Desantis said, according to the Sunday Times.
“Across South Africa, we need to do quite a lot of work to get that infrastructure in place. But we’re excited because we think there’s a lot of business and growth in South Africa and it’s a matter of how quickly we can figure it out,” he added.
Microsoft constructing cloud data centers
In May, U.S. software giant Microsoft announced plans to open two new cloud data centers in South Africa, in order to provide Microsoft Cloud services for the African market from infrastructure based on the continent, according to CNBCAfrica.
These hyperscale data centers will be built in Cape Town and Johannesburg, representing a strategic advantage for Microsoft, as they will be the only top-tier cloud provider with a data center presence in Africa.
Microsoft is a major competitor for Amazon Web Services, and the company may need to follow in their footsteps if they are to remain competitive in the African context.
With availability of cloud services expected in 2018, the services that will be delivered via the two South African data centers will include Microsoft Azure, Office 365, and Dynamics 365, offering enterprise-grade reliability, performance and data residency.
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