AWS simplify SQL queries with Kinesis Analytics

Amazon Web Services have debuted Amazon Kinesis Analytics, a fully managed service for continuously querying streaming data using standard SQL.

Using Kinesis Analytics, developers can write standard SQL queries on streaming data and gain actionable insights in real-time, without having to learn any new programming skills.

Today’s digital businesses generate massive quantities of streaming data from diverse sources such as website and mobile app click-streams, sensors embedded in connected devices, and IT system log files. Being able to continuously query and gain insights from this information in real-time – as it arrives – can allow companies to respond more quickly to business and customer needs. However, existing data processing and analytics solutions aren’t able to continuously process this “fast moving” data, so customers have had to develop streaming data processing applications – which can take months to build and fine-tune – and invest in infrastructure to handle high-speed, high-volume data streams that might include tens of millions of events per hour.

Now, with Kinesis Analytics, continuously querying streaming data in real-time is as simple as writing SQL queries. Kinesis Analytics integrates with Kinesis Streams and Kinesis Firehose and can automatically recognize standard data formats within data streams and suggest a schema, which is easy to edit using Kinesis Analytics’ interactive schema editor. Kinesis Analytics automatically provisions, deploys, and scales the resources required to continuously run queries, delivering processed results directly to AWS services, including Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), Amazon Redshift, and Amazon Elasticsearch Service.

“AWS’s functionality across big data stores, data warehousing, distributed analytics, real-time streaming, machine learning, and business intelligence allows our customers to readily extract and deploy insights from the significant amount of data they’re storing in AWS,” said Roger Barga, General Manager, Amazon Kinesis. “With the addition of Amazon Kinesis Analytics, we’ve expanded what’s already the broadest portfolio of analytics services available and made it easy to use SQL to do analytics on real-time streaming data so that customers can deliver actionable insights to their business faster than ever before.”

Getting Started

Customers can get started with Amazon Kinesis Analytics in minutes by going to the AWS Management Console and selecting a Kinesis Streams or Kinesis Firehose data stream. Kinesis Analytics ingests the data, automatically recognizes standard data formats, and suggests a schema that can be refined using the interactive schema editor. Next, customers use the Kinesis Analytics SQL editor and built-in templates to write SQL queries, and point to where they want Kinesis Analytics to load the processed results. Kinesis Analytics takes care of everything required to continuously query streaming data, automatically scaling to match the volume and throughput rate of incoming data while delivering sub-second processing latencies.

MLB Advanced Media is a full service solutions provider that delivers world-class digital experiences through all forms of interactive media. “We capture telemetry and clickstream data from our video streaming clients using Amazon Kinesis Streams. We process that data in real-time to monitor the video streaming experience we provide our customers,” says Rob Goretsky, Director of Data Engineering, MLBAM. “Insightful analysis of streaming data previously involved building dedicated data pipelines to derive specific metrics. We can now interactively develop queries in minutes using Kinesis Analytics. The familiar SQL API allows our data engineers fast and easy access to the data, and the interactive console provides immediate feedback. We think Kinesis Analytics has promise to help further drive down the cost and realization of these data within our organization, helping us to provide a better customer experience.”

JustGiving is one of the world’s largest social platforms for giving that’s helped 27.7 million users in 196 countries raise $4.1 billion for over 27,000 causes. “We capture clickstream data from web and mobile clients using Amazon Kinesis Streams,” said Richard Freeman, Ph.D., Lead Data Engineer, JustGiving. “Building solutions to process that data in real-time with custom software takes weeks or months to setup. With Kinesis Analytics, we can interactively build and deploy streaming analytics without these development costs or ongoing operational burden. Fully managed services like Kinesis Analytics will allow our engineers and developers to focus on improving the experience of charities and givers.”

Customers can launch Kinesis Analytics using the AWS Management Console, AWS Command Line Interface (CLI), or AWS SDKs. With Kinesis Analytics, customers pay only for the resources that their stream processing applications actually use. There is no minimum fee or setup cost. Amazon Kinesis Analytics includes technology components licensed from SQLstream. Kinesis Analytics is available in the US East (N. Virginia), US West (Oregon), and EU (Ireland) Regions and will expand to additional Regions in the coming months.

Get started with Kinesis Analytics.