Amazon Web Services (AWS), Amazon's cloud services company, announced today that it has expanded its free support and lowered its prices for premium support plans. Amazon's support offerings have also been renamed to reflect the new changes.
The Basic support plan is the free service for all AWS customers. It now includes 24-hour support by email or phone for billing and account issues, as well as tech support. This is in addition to the access customers get to the AWS Developer Forums, technical FAQs, AWS Service Health Dashboard, and other self-help support features.
What was previously the "Bronze tier" for customer support is now called the Developer support plan. It costs $49 per month and comes with all of the features of the Basic plan, plus a guaranteed 12-hour response time for support cases and one-on-one support for AWS questions. Bronze customers also gain access to AWS support engineers during local business hours.
The "Gold tier" has now been renamed the Business support plan, and its price has been reduced from $400 to only $100 per month. Also, a 3% pricing tier has been added to the existing tiers of 5%, 7%, and 10%. Business plan members get the benefits of the lower tiers, plus a one-hour support case response time and support engineers available at any time through chat, email, or phone. In addition, Business plan members will get the new service that Amazon is heavily emphasizing: AWS Trusted Advisor. The new service monitors a customer's services and notifies them when an optimization could be made to save money.
"Amazon has been passionate about customer service since we started the company 17 years ago,” said Brent Jaye, general manager of AWS Support. “Putting customers first is part of our DNA. We not only employ talented support engineers all over the world, but also build technology that enables them to provide proactive and helpful information to our customers. Our new Trusted Advisor program is a good example of that -- we use technology to determine if customers have security adjustments they should make, or if they’re not architected as fault tolerant as they might want to be, or if they have under-utilized instances that they can terminate and save money. We then use both technology and support professionals to surface this information to customers.”
The high-end "Platinum tier" is now the Enterprise support plan, and it comes with a 15-minute response time for "mission-critical issues" and a dedicated account manager. Of course, this is in addition to all of the previous tiers' benefits, including Trusted Advisor. The Enterprise plan now has the same usage-based pricing tiers as the Business plan: 3%, 5%, 7%, and 10%.