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Article

AWS Cuts Support Pricing

Now all customers will automatically get free support and enterprise support will be based on usage rather than a flat fee

It must be getting competitive out there. Amazon Web Services has cut its support prices, expanded free support and added new support features like chat and proactive alerts.

Now all customers will automatically get free support and enterprise support will be based on usage rather than a flat fee, a potential cost saver.

Support levels have been renamed. Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum are now Basic, Developer, Business and Enterprise. All plans cover an unlimited number of cases and can be cancelled at any time. There are no long-term contracts. All plans are available worldwide.

Here's what AWS says:

  • Basic (Expanded free tier): At signup, all AWS customers are automatically enrolled in Basic support for free. Added features in this tier include immediate, around-the-clock access to customer service by e-mail or phone for billing and account issues, and technical support for system health issues. Customers continue to have access to technical FAQs, best practices guides, the AWS Service Health Dashboard, and the AWS Developer Forums, which are monitored and responded to by AWS support engineers.
  • Developer ($49/month and 1:1 customer support): Previously called the Bronze tier, the Developer tier includes all components of the Basic tier, plus 12-hour response time to support cases submitted, 1:1 customer support for any AWS-related question, and access to AWS Technical Support Engineers via e-mail through the AWS online support center during local business hours to help configure, operate, and maintain core AWS services and features.
  • Business (Access to AWS Trusted Advisor): Previously called the Gold tier, the Business tier includes all components of the Basic and Developer tiers, plus one-hour response time to support cases submitted and support engineers available 24/7 via phone, chat or e-mail. In addition to chat capabilities, new features include access to AWS Trusted Advisor, a program that monitors AWS infrastructure services, identifies customers' usage patterns, and notifies customers when opportunities exist to save money, improve system performance, or close security gaps. Customers also receive support for the most common third-party software running on AWS. Business tier minimum pricing has been reduced from $400 to $100 per month and a 3% usage-based pricing tier has been added to the existing pricing tiers of 10%, 7%, and 5%.
  • Enterprise (New pricing based on usage vs. flat fee): Previously called the Platinum tier, the Enterprise tier provides customers with all of the features of the Business tier, plus 15-minute response time for mission-critical issues, and a dedicated Technical Account Manager who is intimately familiar with the customer's specific AWS architecture. Technical Account Managers will also conduct periodic business reviews for infrastructure planning, report metrics, collaborate on launches, and connect customers to AWS Solutions Architects as needed. The Trusted Advisor program is also available to all Enterprise tier customers. The Enterprise tier minimum pricing has been reduced from a flat 10% usage fee to usage-based pricing tiers of 10%, 7%, 5% and 3%.

Amazon's six-month-old Trusted Advisor program, available to its top two tiers, uses technology to determine if customers have security adjustments they should make, or if they're not architected as fault tolerant as they might want to be, or if they have under-utilized instances that they can terminate and save money.

See http://aws.amazon.com/premiumsupport/.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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