AWS’ Serverless Application Repository compounds its early advantage

Amazon Web Services gave its customers an easier way to get started with serverless applications today. The cloud provider launched the Serverless Application Repository out of beta
, which provides customers with an app store to try out different applications built using Lambda, its event-driven computing service.

AWS made a major splash when itannounced Lambda at its re:Invent conference in Las Vegas roughly three and a half years ago. It allows developers to write short computing functions that run in response to trigger events, without managing the underlying computing infrastructure used to run those functions.

Serverless application development has drawn quite a bit of interest from AWS customers, since it has the potential to alleviate a major drag on developers’ time.

This launch makes the already easy-to-use Lambda even easier to adopt. Customers don’t even have to write code to use applications from the repository, but the service also allows them to modify the applications they deploy. That way, it’s possible for Lambda novices to see how other companies build on the service, improving their own skills.

It also helps improve the network effects that keep people using AWS products. The more people who publish and consume serverless apps through the repository, the more likely people are to build apps on top of Lambda — and that effect keeps compounding.

Getting people deeper into the Lambda ecosystem is really good news for AWS, since it’s hard to port code that integrates with AWS’s technology to other cloud platforms, like those operated by Microsoft and Google.

Developers can publish their applications through the repository in a few steps. First, they set up a unique ID for the project, add an open source software license, and connect it to a source code repository.

Customers can search the repository for apps that they want to run, and either consume them as-is, or modify the code to meet their needs. If they do make changes, customers will be able to submit them to the application’s creator for inclusion in future iterations of the software.

Running applications from the repository doesn’t cost customers anything beyond what they pay for the cloud services underpinning it.

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