Geospatial or otherwise known as Location data, is a critical component for most modern applications and services. The usage ranges from simply displaying a map for data visualization to tracking assets (inventory, shipping containers, etc.) and resources (delivery vehicles) in real-time. Once the location data has been created, a business workflow kicks in and performs one or more tasks on collected data. It may include sending alerts based on geofencing or aggregating data to predict estimated time to destination. Today, developers have to use several components and services from different providers to build location-aware applications and business logic. This process of stitching various pieces together leads to complexity in the application code and impacts the overall performance and time to market. AWS is trying to streamline this integration process and has launched a new service to help developers design and develop location-aware applications easier and faster.
Amazon Location Service is a fully managed service that makes it easy for developers to add location data, such as maps, points of interest, and geocoding to applications, without sacrificing data security, user privacy, data quality, or cost. Amazon Location service makes it easier and cost-effective to integrate location-based services (LBS) using high-quality data from global, trusted providers Esri and HERE.
Some of the key benefits of this service include:
Simplified access to location data
Developers can use Amazon Location API to integrate geospatial information into their application. This API is consistent across the LBS data providers, so you don't need to learn and integrate multiple APIs to get the data you want for your usage.
High quality and cost-effective data
Amazon Location Service uses global providers such as Esri and Here for geospatial data. These providers provide data to route millions of vehicles and power hundreds of thousands of mobile applications today. With Location Service, you have access to the same high-quality data and capabilities at a much lower price to build your applications.
Privacy and security
Amazon Location Service anonymizes all the queries sent to data providers by removing customer metadata and account information. Additionally, sensitive tracking and geofencing location information, such as facility, asset, vehicles, and personnel locations, never leaves your AWS account at all. This helps to protect user privacy and reduce your application's security risks.
Faster time to market
Amazon Location Service helps you move applications from MVP to production faster. You don't have to work with multiple providers, learn their APIs or incorporate multiple SDKs into your application. With out-of-the-box integration with CloudWatch metrics, you can build dashboards and get insight into data points, including requests, latency, and faults.
Getting started with Amazon Location Service
The fastest and easiest way to get started with the service is to use the Amazon Location Service console that provides a visual and interactive tool for you to experiment with. This tool allows you to preview the default map, search points of interest, simulate tracking devices, draw geofences, and get directions. AWS also provides front-end SDKs for Android, iOS, and the web. Amazon Location Service is supported by AWS Command Line Interface (CLI) to access from the command line and automate them through scripts.
Amazon Location Service is available as a Preview in the US-East (N. Virginia), and US-East (Ohio), US-West (Oregon), EU (Ireland), and Asia Pacific (Tokyo) AWS Regions.