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Amazon Web Services is making its cloud more appealing for companies that need to serve large amounts of video over the web. The company announced a set of AWS Media Services today that are designed to make it easier for businesses to encode and serve video across the internet, using the power of the cloud.

It’s all based on the cloud provider’s acquisition of Elemental, a startup that specialized in providing those services, both as an independent company and as a part of AWS.

Doubling down on streaming video makes sense for AWS, considering Amazon’s continuing work in the space through its Prime Video service for consumers. What’s more, serving video is a task that is well-suited to the cloud, since it can require massive amounts of computing power in order to process and serve files to end users.

AWS isn’t the only cloud provider making a big push into facilitating the processing and serving of video through the cloud. With its Azure cloud platform, Microsoft has thrown a lot of effort behind building and promoting similar services, which have been used by the likes of NBC Sports, The CW, and Xbox.


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The services announced today encompass those that originated with Elemental, as well as two new offerings. As before, customers will be able to get Media Convert, which transcodes footage; Media Live, which is designed to encode live video for immediate streaming; and Media Protect, which provides digital rights management for video.

New today is a Media Store service that’s supposed to provide a video-optimized home for files in the cloud, backed by AWS’s Simple Storage Service (S3). In addition, the cloud provider is making available a new service that’s designed to dynamically insert advertisements into video so that businesses can more easily monetize footage.

All of these services will now be available to customers through the AWS Console on a pay-as-you-go basis. Previously, it was only possible to get Elemental’s services by talking with a salesperson. While that sort of high-touch sales channel isn’t going away, businesses that just want to take the services for a spin can do that without a long engagement.

This announcement kicks off AWS’ week of news as part of its Re:invent conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. The cloud provider is expected to lay out a wide variety of new services, along with a smorgasbord of updates to existing offerings.

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