AT&T is partnering with Amazon Web Services to connect its network more closely to the leading cloud provider. While the terms of the multi-year agreement are not yet disclosed, one aspect of the deal will connect customers of AT&T’s high speed private network, called NetBond, directly to Amazon’s cloud, allowing for secure storage and information retrieval along with access to other Amazon cloud services. AT&T has already struck similar arrangements with Microsoft Azure MSFT 4.21% , Box BOX 0.33% , and IBM IBM -1.22% among others.
A second facet of the deal will focus on connecteding smart devices or IoT, collectively referred to within the tech industry as the Internet of things. Sensors and devices connected to AT&T’s network will be able to send data to Amazon’s cloud. AT&T said there are already 29 million connected devices on its network and that figure will grow exponentially by 2020.
As Amazon Web Services and AT&T join forces, they also hope to improve network security altogether for their platforms and users. The deal aims to help customers prevent, detect, and respond to cyber threats, a growing area of concern for many, following yesterday’s DDoS based outages to Twitter, Spotify and other Internet services.
Amazon Web Services is the largest cloud provider by far, and its rapid growth has helped drive the company’s share price to record levels this year. Revenue at the cloud unit hit $5.5 billion in the first half of the year, up 61% from the same period of 2015.
Amazon says the deal would help ease the way for big companies to phase out their own data centers in favor of using its cloud service. “Advanced connectivity and network solutions are critical to enabling our customers to get the most out of our services,” said Terry Wise, vice president of worldwide partner ecosystem at Amazon, in a statement.