Amazon Redshift Overview

Amazon Redshift is the #3 ranked solution in our list of top Cloud Data Warehouse tools. It is most often compared to Snowflake: Amazon Redshift vs Snowflake

What is Amazon Redshift?

Amazon Redshift is a fast and powerful, fully managed, petabyte-scale data warehouse service in the cloud. Customers can start small for just $0.25 per hour with no commitments or upfront costs and scale to a petabyte or more for $1,000 per terabyte per year, less than a tenth of most other data warehousing solutions.

Traditional data warehouses require significant time and resource to administer, especially for large datasets. In addition, the financial cost associated with building, maintaining, and growing self-managed, on-premise data warehouses is very high. Amazon Redshift not only significantly lowers the cost of a data warehouse, but also makes it easy to analyze large amounts of data very quickly.

Amazon Redshift gives you fast querying capabilities over structured data using familiar SQL-based clients and business intelligence (BI) tools using standard ODBC and JDBC connections. Queries are distributed and parallelized across multiple physical resources. You can easily scale an Amazon Redshift data warehouse up or down with a few clicks in the AWS Management Console or with a single API call. Amazon Redshift automatically patches and backs up your data warehouse, storing the backups for a user-defined retention period. Amazon Redshift uses replication and continuous backups to enhance availability and improve data durability and can automatically recover from component and node failures. In addition, Amazon Redshift supports Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (Amazon VPC), SSL, AES-256 encryption and Hardware Security Modules (HSMs) to protect your data in transit and at rest.

As with all Amazon Web Services, there are no up-front investments required, and you pay only for the resources you use. Amazon Redshift lets you pay as you go. You can even try Amazon Redshift for free.

Amazon Redshift Buyer's Guide

Download the Amazon Redshift Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: May 2021

Amazon Redshift Customers

Liberty Mutual Insurance, 4Cite Marketing, BrandVerity, DNA Plc, Sirocco Systems, Gainsight, Blue 449

Amazon Redshift Video

Pricing Advice

What users are saying about Amazon Redshift pricing:
  • "The part that I like best is that you only pay for what you are using."
  • "My customers have implementations that cost about $500 a month for a very small one. I also have a customer with a monthly invoice of about $25,000 USD."
  • "At the moment, pricing is a little bit on the higher side, although it depends on the size of the company."

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Chief Executive Officer at Ampcome
Real User
Top 10
Scales according to our needs, which saves a lot in terms of upfront costs

What is our primary use case?

We are a digital transformation services company, and we are using Amazon Redshift for one of our clients. They are a logistics company that has transportation and other needs. Their first requirement is for financial reporting, where we pull financial data from their many ERP systems and can provide a corporate-level view. There is also an operations standpoint, where they are looking for operational insights. For this, we again pull different information from their ERPs, bring it into Redshift, and then model it in such a way that they will be able to see a consolidated view in terms of… more »

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable feature is the scalability, as it grows according to our needs."
  • "The OLAP slide and dice features need to be improved."

What other advice do I have?

I am interested in seeing a split between compute and storage, which is something that they are currently working on. We plan to start leveraging it at some point in the future. In summary, I think that Amazon Redshift is a very good data warehouse and we really like it a lot. I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.
Cloud & Data - practice leader at Micropole Belgium
Real User
Top 5
Quick to deploy, easy to use, and performs well, but ingesting data in realtime should be improved

What is our primary use case?

We are a service provider and we currently have five clients with active IT implementations that use Amazon Redshift. We also use it ourselves. My clients primarily use this product for data analytics. They are mostly working with big data and using the machine learning functionality.

Pros and Cons

  • "I like the cost-benefit ratio, meaning that it is as easy to use as it is powerful and well-performing."
  • "There are too many limitations with respect to concurrency."

What other advice do I have?

With the most recent update, we should now be able to decouple storage from processes. My advice for anybody who is implementing Redshift is to make sure that they are using it for what it is made to do. It's an analytical database, so it's not meant to process transactional data. It's the perfect tool if you use it for the right purpose. Overall, it is a very stable and robust product. That said, there is still plenty of potential for improvement. I would rate this solution a seven out of ten.
Learn what your peers think about Amazon Redshift. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: May 2021.
479,816 professionals have used our research since 2012.
MS
Service Manager & Solution Architect at a logistics company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 20
Easy to use and simple to setup, but the performance is low, and there is no tool to support the CDC

What is our primary use case?

We stored all of the data in the S3 bucket and would like to have it stored in a data warehouse, which is why we chose this database. It would be very easy for us as an end-user, who would like to access the data, rather than draw it post-transformation and store it at a database level.

Pros and Cons

  • "It is quite simple to use and there are no issues with creating the tables."
  • "It takes a lot of time to ingest and update the data."

What other advice do I have?

We have only just started using Redshift, but we are not really satisfied with it. I would rate this solution a six out of ten.
Business Analyst at a tech services company with 201-500 employees
Real User
Good performance and integrates well with our Tableau solution

What is our primary use case?

We use Amazon S3 along with RedShift for storing our data. The data comes from various sources, including our client and third-parties. We get the data as an S3 file and then load it into RedShift using the ETL tools. RedShift will then act as the data source for Tableau, which is used for forecasting and other marketing activities.

Pros and Cons

  • "The processing of data is very fast."
  • "It would be useful to have an option where all of the data can be queried at once and then have the result shown."

What other advice do I have?

I am very happy with what RedShift has. So far, anything that I have required has been there and whatever use case I have faced, the functionality is available. My advice for anybody who is implementing this solution is to look into what certifications are available and which ones are required for different roles. Depending on the job, different certifications are relevant or required. For example, as a business analyst, a coding certification would not be useful for me and it would be a waste of money. These things should all be considered before beginning with any certifications. I would…
CEO at Screenit Labs Pvt Ltd
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
Good support and provides on-the-fly analytics capabilities, but it needs to be more user-friendly

What is our primary use case?

We are a solution provider and Amazon Redshift is one of the products that we implement for our clients. We are working with a few customers that have it implemented right now.

Pros and Cons

  • "The feature that we find most useful is the ability to do analytics on the fly."
  • "In our experiments, the handling of unstructured data was not very smooth."

What other advice do I have?

My advice for anybody who is implementing Redshift is to ensure that the requirements include having technical people on board to continuously work on getting the results you want. Because it's not that user-friendly, there is a need for a technical resource in the company. Also, I would suggest watching out for scalability beyond what we have tested. If there is a need for scaling then it should be tested, although it depends on the use case. If Redshift had a proper interface then I would score it higher. I would rate this solution a seven out of ten.
MM
Head of Data Warehouse & Business Intelligence at a comms service provider with 501-1,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
The product is simple to use but it should be more flexible

What is our primary use case?

I'm the head of Data Warehouse and Business Intelligence, and our company is an Amazon customer. Most of the company's data sources were on Amazon at the time the product was deployed so it was logical to use this database. The data warehouse is quite small, compressed it's maybe 160 GB. It's not like an autonomous data warehouse or Exadata, which was almost 40 terabytes. It's a simple method of achieving extraction and loading. There is no real incremental load on this. Of course in the future, with the company growing, this should be changed and we'll probably need some kind of incremental… more »

Pros and Cons

  • "The product is relatively easy to use because there is no indexing and no partitions."
  • "The product could be improved by making it more flexible."

What other advice do I have?

I would rate it a five out of ten.
DBA at Kimetrics
Real User
Top 10
Costs less than Oracle Cloud or Microsoft Azure solutions

Pros and Cons

  • "Amazon Redshift is very fast. It has really good response times. It's very user-friendly."
  • "There is some missing functionality and sometimes it's so difficult to work in. We need to convert these functionalities using VACUUM inside Amazon Redshift and then it causes some complexity."

What other advice do I have?

I would recommend Amazon Redshift as it is part of the AWS platform and they are the biggest in the world. I would give Amazon Redshift a rating of eight on a scale of ten.
Senior System Engineer at a computer software company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Has good data updates and latency between data-refreshes

What is our primary use case?

My primary use for Amazon Redshift is for analytical purposes.

Pros and Cons

  • "In terms of valuable features, I like the columnar storage that Redshift provides. The storage is one of the key features that we're looking for. Also, the data updates and the latency between the data-refreshes."
  • "Pricing is one of the things that it could improve. It should be more competitive."

What other advice do I have?

On a scale of 1 - 10, where 1 is the worst and 10 is the best, I'd give it an 8.
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