NOTE: The following content was transcribed and modified from the Thoughts on X podcast embedded above… Click Play if you would like to listen.

AWS re:Invent turns ten this year and the mega tech conference in Las Vegas is definitely still a destination event. But with the landscape changing around public and private cloud with hybrid and multiple clouds does AWS have a challenge on it’s hands to retain its dominance?

re:Invent 2022 will be my third reinvent. The first re:Invent I went to was five years ago in 2017 and then again in 2018. I then took a bit of a break in 2019 and then COVID hit and wasn’t able to attend last year. This event is well received in the wider tech community. It has become the default and destination tech event for infrastructure guys. But also, at the core of AWSs fan base, which is more DevOps, cloud native type of practitioners.

This is going to be an interesting event for a number of reasons. I get the feeling that AWS still internally believes, rightly or wrongly, that it is the the panacea of public clouds.

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AWS does believe that there’s nothing better. And they have a right to believe that. It’s burnt into their employees culture and with the fact that they’ve got such a huge market share out there and have continued to grow and be successful, it’s not really a surprise. From memory, their share of the market is twice as big as what Azure had and is they are twice as big as what Google Cloud’s is. And then obviously everyone below that, however, they shouldn’t lose fact of the site that in this day and age, when we talk about hybrid cloud, multiple cloud, a world where the application is dictating where workloads live.

The public cloud as a whole, all in destination is not the reality for a lot of companies out there

To be fair to AWS, they’ve done a great job over the last ten years or so gaining mass adoption and they have every right to be almost dismissive of the rest of the competition… that said, One of the advantages of working outside of that public cloud space, working for a company like Veeam that deals with a broader ecosystem, is that we get to be exposed and I get to be exposed personally to the broader ecosystem out there. I look at Asia and I think of public clouds like Alibaba, Tencent. Huawei.

If you ask AWS about those clouds, they would say, What are they and what do they do? I don’t understand the dismissiveness. Yes, they fill a need in those regions, but they have a ton of customers and are very successful. So when you look at the Hyperscalers out there, we look at Azure, Google and we’ve got other ones. IBM, Oracle are doing their thing. There’s a lot of the big hardware companies like Dell as well doing a bit of cloud stuff.

If you look beyond that into the service provider land and you’ve got the telco clouds and then the service providers which all offer very tangible services for specific use cases. So AWS does indeed have a challenge on their hands. I’m not sure if they see it (or what to acknowledge it) or not and maybe they’re blinded by that very real perception of their success in the market.

They still need to remain to be seen to be competitive and innovative.

I don’t think that that is going to be a problem for them because they’ve got such a history of innovation, but they can’t (and wont) just rest on their laurels. If they carry this expectation that companies and their workloads will just shift to the public cloud then they will start to loose sight of what needs to be done.

I think it’s always exciting to get a understanding of what services are being released and announcing this week. I think by last count there was about 270 services in play as of today. That’s obviously going to be added to over the next couple of days. I always look forward to the keynotes. They’re great events. I always look forward to when a Vogel’s presentations. They are always very dynamic and interesting and you know, a relatively still new CEO of AWS Adam Selipsky, still finding his feet, obviously not within the actual company of Amazon, but as a slate with Andy Jassy moving to the top position. But you know, there’s a lot of interesting bits to come out of the keynotes. There’s a lot of interesting technologies, methodologies, well, reference architectures, best practice to come out of the sessions and obviously looking forward to the Expo Hall.

It’s one of the biggest and most diverse expo halls that you will see at an event. Always got great new technology and we’re looking forward to walking around and saying what’s new in that whole. But overall, we’re looking forward to this week. It’s going to be fantastic. There’s about 60,000 people estimated to be here just walking downstairs, getting my badge this morning. It was already packed, which really shows you that we have come out of COVID.