Ahead of AWS re:Invent this week in Las Vegas, AWS CEO Andy Jassy sat down with Forbes to talk about his views on why AWS is the leader in public cloud and how its customer-centric approach sets it apart from other vendors.
Jassy was named AWS CEO in April. Previously, he served as vice president of AWS; Jassy has worked at Amazon since 1997.
Here are five of the main takeaways from his interview, which you can read in full on Forbes.
1. Cloud “Building Blocks” and their Developer Appeal
Part of AWS’ success in the cloud can certainly be attributed to its use by developers.
“There are a very large number of developers, and a large number of those developers want to have access to the APIs and want to have access to the building blocks to stitch together whatever applications in whatever way they see fit,” Jassy tells Forbes. “The cloud really is the great playing-field leveler for customers, and I think that’s a very different way for businesses to engage with their infrastructure supplier than has been the case for the last 30 years.”
2. Price Cuts and Margins in the Cloud
“There are going to be lots of ebbs and flows in the business. What the margins are today is just a moment in time. At different times, I expect they’ll be higher. At different times, I expect they’ll be lower. But one thing that will be constant is we will continue to lower prices on behalf of our customers. Every single one of our teams has goals around taking cost out of their own cost structure, and every year we lower our prices on multiple occasions, giving it back to customers in the form of lower prices,” says Jassy.
3. AWS and the Internet of Things (IoT) Opportunity
“IoT is a generational opportunity that’s just exploding,” says Jassy. ‘IoT is one of the fastest-growing and adopted types of new paradigm shifts that you’ve seen in a long time. And a lot of it is because the device manufacturers are highly incented to actually build in the cloud because it leads to additional capabilities. If you look at what people already are doing on top of AWS in the IoT space, most of the big implementations are on top of AWS are coming in the form of IoT.”
4. Pricing Flexibility
“With us, you don’t have to actually make a three-year commitment,” Jassy says. “You don’t have to make a five-year commitment. You can choose to spend whatever amount of money you want with us and only pay for what you actually consume. And so we have a number of customers who say to us: “Look, we’re willing to make some kind of commitment over a period of time in exchange for advantageous pricing [over a longer term].”
5. Customer Comes First
“One thing that’s different about AWS versus other organizations is that we spend a lot of time with customers,” Jassy says. “Our product teams spend a lot of time with customers — a lot of time with the customers who use their service, a lot of time with customers who say they have a need for that service, who aren’t using it. And so they’re constantly collecting signals and feedback from customers on what matters most and testing their theses against what customers are actually telling them matters.”