Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) is an object storage service that offers industry-leading scalability, data availability, security, and performance. This means customers of all sizes and industries can use it to store and protect any amount of data for a range of use cases, such as data lakes, websites, mobile applications, backup and restore, archive, enterprise applications, IoT devices, and big data analytics. Amazon S3 provides easy-to-use management features so we can organize our data and configure finely-tuned access controls to meet our specific business, organizational, and compliance requirements. Amazon S3 is designed for 99.999999999% (11 9’s) of durability, and stores data for millions of applications for companies all around the world.

Introduction to Amazon S3


Industry-leading performance, scalability, availability, and durability

Scale our storage resources up and down to meet fluctuating demands, without upfront investments or resource procurement cycles. Amazon S3 is designed for 99.999999999% (11 9’s) of data durability because it automatically creates and stores copies of all S3 objects across multiple systems. This means our data is available when needed and protected against failures, errors, and threats. Amazon S3 also delivers strong read-after-write consistency automatically, at no cost, and without changes to performance or availability.

Wide range of cost-effective storage classes

Save costs without sacrificing performance by storing data across the S3 Storage Classes, which support different data access levels at corresponding rates. We can use S3 Storage Class Analysis to discover data that should move to a lower-cost storage class based on access patterns, and configure an S3 Lifecycle policy to execute the transfer. We can also store data with changing or unknown access patterns in S3 Intelligent-Tiering, which tiers objects based on changing access patterns and automatically delivers cost savings. With the S3 Outposts storage class, we can meet data residency requirements, and store data on-premises in our Outposts environment using S3 on Outposts.

Unmatched security, compliance, and audit capabilities

Store our data in Amazon S3 and secure it from unauthorized access with encryption features and access management tools. S3 is the only object storage service that allows us to block public access to all of our objects at the bucket or the account level with S3 Block Public Access. S3 maintains compliance programs, such as PCI-DSS, HIPAA/HITECH, FedRAMP, EU Data Protection Directive, and FISMA, to help us meet regulatory requirements. S3 integrates with Amazon Macie to discover and protect our sensitive data. AWS also supports numerous auditing capabilities to monitor access requests to our S3 resources.

Easily manage data and access controls

S3 gives us robust capabilities to manage access, cost, replication, and data protection. S3 Access Points make it easy to manage data access with specific permissions for our applications using a shared data set. S3 Replication manages data replication within the region or to other regions. S3 Batch Operations helps manage large scale changes across billions of objects. S3 Storage Lens delivers organization-wide visibility into object storage usage and activity trends. Since S3 works with AWS Lambda, we can log activities, define alerts, and automate workflows without managing additional infrastructure.

Query-in-place and process on-request

Run big data analytics across our S3 objects with our query-in-place services. Use Amazon Athena to query S3 data with standard SQL expressions and Amazon Redshift Spectrum to analyze data that is stored across our AWS data warehouses and S3 resources. We can also use S3 Select to retrieve subsets of object data, instead of the entire object, and improve query performance by up to 400%. With S3 Object Lambda, we can add our own code to S3 GET requests to modify and process data as it is returned to an application. This can be used to filter certain rows, dynamically resize images, redact or mask confidential data, or otherwise modify data. Our custom code executes on-demand, eliminates the need to create and store derivative copies of our data, and requires no changes to applications.

Most supported cloud storage service

Store and protect our data in Amazon S3 by working with a partner from the AWS Partner Network (APN) — the largest community of technology and consulting cloud services providers. The APN recognizes migration partners that transfer data to Amazon S3 and storage partners that offer S3-integrated solutions for primary storage, backup and restore, archive, and disaster recovery. We can also purchase an AWS-integrated solution directly from the AWS Marketplace, which lists over 250 storage-specific offerings.