Bezos Opens Web-Services Sharing for Profits

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.—’s far-ranging online retail business will continue to serve as its primary money-maker for the foreseeable future, but a collection of Web services applications piggybacked on the infrastructure supporting its consumer sales will become a growing source of income and technical development expertise in years to come, according to Jeff Bezos, the firm’s founder and chief executive.

Speaking to attendees of the annual Emerging Technology Conference being held here at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on Sept. 27 and 28, Bezos outlined a handful of Web services applications launched by the online retailer in the name of exposing the capabilities of its massive IT infrastructure for new purposes.

The executive maintains that using the scale and processing power of the firm’s back-end operations to create Web services tools that Amazon can market to a new class of customers will lend additional revenue and valuable programming experience to the retailer’s business as it moves forward.

In addition to providing with new sales opportunities and Web services development experience, the Web 2.0 systems already launched by the company are providing new methods for other businesses to tap into the sizable infrastructure built by the company to advance their own operations.

For instance, Amazon S3, an online storage application designed to make enterprise-scale memory and processing power available to anyone, at a rate of 15 cents per month for a gigabit of memory, will allow smaller software developers building products for enterprise use to get real-world testing data without needing to invest in the infrastructure needed to do so.

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