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InfoQ Homepage News AWS Waives Egress Fees for Customers Exiting the Cloud

AWS Waives Egress Fees for Customers Exiting the Cloud

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AWS has recently announced free egress traffic for customers leaving the cloud and withdrawing their data from the AWS infrastructure. This initiative follows the guidelines of the European Data Act and is designed to help customers switch to alternative cloud providers or on-premises data centers.

Cloud providers usually offer free data ingress into the cloud, but costs associated with data transfer out to the internet (DTO) can be substantial: previously, AWS provided 100 GB per month free egress from AWS regions to the internet as part of the Free Tier, but any data beyond this allocation incurred charges. With the recent announcement, customers now have the option to request free DTO for additional data by contacting support. Upon approval of the request, AWS will issue temporary credits based on the total volume of data stored across AWS services. Sébastien Stormacq, principal developer advocate at AWS, explains:

It’s necessary to go through support because you make hundreds of millions of data transfers each day, and we generally do not know if the data transferred out to the internet is a normal part of your business or a one-time transfer as part of a switch to another cloud provider or on-premises.

Under mounting pressure from European regulators, AWS is not the only provider introducing a waiver on DTO charges. Earlier this year, Google introduced a comparable option, while Microsoft announced this week free DTO when leaving Azure. Stormacq adds:

The waiver on data transfer out to the internet charges also follows the direction set by the European Data Act and it is available to all AWS customers around the world and from any AWS region.

Credits apply exclusively to DTO charges associated with moving away from the cloud but there is no requirement to close an account or migrate all hosted workloads to qualify. Furthermore, the waiver does not apply to data out from services like CloudFront, Direct Connect, Snow Family, or Global Accelerator. Gergely Orosz, author of the The Pragmatic Engineer newsletter, comments:

Europe gets a lot of flak for how they regulate more and more of tech (in Europe, of course). Regulation sets new rules, often ones that companies wouldn’t follow if not required. AWS just dropped their atrocious egress fees, globally, because of an EU regulation.

Corey Quinn, chief cloud economist at The Duckbill Group, disagrees:

This is almost entirely done for optics; if someone's debating moving a workload off of AWS (this happens less frequently than the tech press would have you believe) they aren't stopping because the egress fee is expensive; it's ~3 months of storing the data in S3. Instead, the fee hurts when customers are doing their usual business and sending traffic to customers, not "when they're leaving the cloud." This change does nothing to fix that core pain, but it may look like it does to regulators if they're not on the ball.

AWS has published a FAQ page with further details on how customers can apply for the waiver. In a separate announcement, AWS explains how it supports the Fair Software Licensing Principles for customers changing provider.


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