(Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc's cloud business, Amazon Web Services, has launched a service to help customers build applications to connect devices through the cloud, the so-called "Internet of Things".
The service, called "AWS IoT", will allow factory floors, vehicles, health care systems, household appliances among other "things" to connect through cloud services, the company said on Thursday. (amzn.to/1L97w0x)
The beta version of the service is available from Thursday, Amazon's Chief Technology Officer Werner Vogels said at a company event in Las Vegas.
The connection to the cloud will be fast and lightweight, making it a good fit for devices that have limited memory, processing power, or battery life, Amazon said.
The global market for "Internet of Things", the concept of connecting everyday devices to the Internet, will nearly triple to $1.7 trillion by 2020, research firm International Data Corp has estimated.
Technology firms including Google Inc, Intel Corp, Cisco Systems Inc, Samsung Electronics and telecoms majors such as Vodafone and Verizon are betting heavily on the relatively new technology to drive revenue and profit in the future.
Microsoft Corp also launched an IoT suite last week.
Amazon said on Thursday there were no minimum fees for AWS IoT and customers using the service will have to only pay for what they use.
The prices will be determined on the number of messages, defined by Amazon as a 512-byte block of data, exchanged between devices and AWS IoT.
Amazon said it would offer customers 250,000 free messages per month, for 12 months. Prices start at $5 for every million messages, the company said.
Fortune reported on Monday that Amazon planned to announce a cloud-based service for the "Internet of Things". (for.tn/1Mbg7j2)
Earlier this year, Amazon bought 2lemetry, a startup that developed an enterprise-focused platform to track and manage IP-enabled machines and other connected devices.
Reporting by Abhirup Roy and Devika Krishna Kumar in Bengaluru; Editing by Kirti Pandey and Savio D'Souza