Months ago, Amazon Managed Blockchain (AMB) hit general availability, and at the time, Amazon was able to pair it with Amazon Quantum Ledger Database (QLDB). Now the latter is widely available as well, in multiple regions of the United States — U.S. East (Ohio and Northern Virginia) and U.S. West (Oregon) — and in Asia Pacific (Tokyo) and the EU (Ireland). Additional regions are coming soon.
According to Amazon, Amazon QLDB is ideal for customers who want rather standard blockchain services like smart contracts and anonymous data sharing, but those require a centrally owned ledger. In the press release, Amazon said, “Customers can use relational databases, or they can use the ledger technology in one of the open source blockchain frameworks. Neither solution is optimal.” The primary case the company is making is that even blockchain-based ledgers can be difficult to set up and manage.
“Amazon QLDB is a new class of database that provides a high-performance, immutable, and cryptographically verifiable ledger that customers can use to build applications that act as a system of record, where multiple parties are transacting with a centralized, trusted entity,” reads the press release in part.
AWS said that it’s been using a version of Amazon QLDB internally for years, and has now added the ability to cryptographically verify data integrity as it rolls out to external customers.
Features and benefits include:
- “Journal” immutable transactional log tracks all application changes over time
- Requires transactions to comply with atomicity, consistency isolation, and durability (ACID)
- Historical changes are cryptographically chained and verifiable for customers comfortable with SQL queries
- Serverless — customers must only create a ledger and define tables, then Amazon QLDB scales according to app demands
- Does not require distributed consensus, and therefore promises two or three times the transaction speed of other blockchain frameworks
Pricing is flexible; customers pay only for the reads, writes, and storage they use — and all are billed separately. There are no minimum fees or mandatory service usage requirements.