Amazon Ships Data By The Truckload With New Snowmobile Service


Amazon now lets you quite literally “upload” a truckload of data to its servers. Its new service Snowmobile transfers your data via the physical highways rather than the Internet.

The service is aimed at companies with spectacularly huge amounts of data to upload, to the point that even a fiber connection isn’t practical. Amazon already offers a service nicknamed Snowball, in which companies can fill up a 50 terabyte hard drive and mail it in for upload.

Snowmobile is instead a truck carrying a shipping container full of digital storage units that will come to your facility. You can then simply plug, upload your data and then watch the truck head off back to Amazon’s facilities. Each storage unit on the truck is 80 terabytes, with the total capacity being 100 petabytes.

Ludicrous as the concept may sound, it does seem to make sense for companies with very large amounts of data. Even on a 1 Gbps Internet connection that worked at full capacity, uploading 80 terabytes would take around a week.

Wired crunched the numbers and estimated that – admittedly if you ignore the time “loading” the truck – if the full capacity was used and the truck was driving at 65 mph, it would be a data transfer speed of almost 5,000 Gbps.


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