Most people still think of Amazon primarily as an online retailer, but the elevation of Andy Jassy to take over from Jeff Bezos as CEO provides further evidence for the strategic importance of Amazon Web Services (AWS) within the Amazon group.
AWS was launched in 2002 and relaunched in 2006. In March 2008, Om Malik published an interview with Ray Ozzie, then the Chief Software Architect at Microsoft, which included some positive comments about AWS. By the end of the year, both Google and Microsoft had announced rival cloud computing offerings. As far as I can see, cloud computing first appeared as an Emerging Technology on the Gartner Hype Curve (it's not a cycle) in 2008, reaching the Peak of Inflated Expectations by 2009.
During that period, I was a software industry analyst, calling out Jeff Bezos and Ray Ozzie as two of the most visionary players in the industry. My colleague Lawrence Wilkes wrote a long report on AWS in 2004. (But the hype around cloud computing took off later, and the broader awareness of AWS is comparatively recent, so I'm not convinced that the classic hype curve applies to this topic.)
Alongside the news of Jassy's elevation, today's tech press also reports that Google Cloud is still making massive losses. So much for the Slope of Enlightenment then.
Jasper Jolly, Bezos leaves Amazon in its prime – keeping it that way is the task (The Guardian, 3 February 2021)
Kieren McCarthy, So Jeff Bezos is stepping back from Amazon to play with his space rockets. Who's this Andy Jassy chap? (The Register, 3 February 2021)
Om Malik, GigaOM Interview: Ray Ozzie (GigaOM, 10 March 2008)
Ron Miller, What Andy Jassy’s promotion to Amazon CEO could mean for AWS
(TechCrunch, 2 February 2021)
Simon Sharwood, Google's cloud services lost $14.6bn over three years – and CEO Sundar Pichai likes that trajectory (The Register, 3 February 2021)
Lawrence Wilkes, Amazon and eBay Web Services - The new enterprise applications? (CBDI Journal, October 2004)
Related posts: Jeff Bezos and Ecosystem Thinking (February 2004), Amazon and eBay (August 2004), Internet Service Disruption (November 2005), Ray Ozzie (March 2008), Utility Computing and Profitability (March 2008)
Also Technology Hype Curve (September 2005)