Amazon launches Personalize, a fully managed AI-powered recommendation service


Delivering personalized experiences to customers just got easier, thanks to Amazon. The Seattle company today announced the general availability of Amazon Personalize, an AWS service that facilitates the development of websites, mobile apps, and content management and email marketing systems that suggest products, provide tailored search results, and customize funnels on the fly.

It’s in select AWS regions to start, including US East (Ohio), US East (North Virginia), US West (Oregon), Asia Pacific (Tokyo), Asia Pacific (Singapore) and EU (Ireland). Additional locations are on the way.

“We are excited to share with AWS customers the expertise we’ve developed during two decades of using machine learning to deliver great experiences on Amazon.com,” said VP of machine learning at AWS Swami Sivasubramanian. “Customers have been asking for Amazon Personalize, and we are eager to see how they implement these services to delight their own end users. And the best part is that these artificial intelligence services, like Amazon Personalize, do not require any machine learning experience to immediately train, tune, and deploy models to meet their business demands.”

Personalize, which was announced last year at Amazon’s re:Invent conference, is a fully managed service that trains, tunes, and deploys custom machine learning models in the cloud by provisioning the necessary infrastructure and managing things like data processing, feature extraction, algorithm training and optimization, and hosting. Customers provide an activity stream from their apps and websites – e.g., clicks, page views, signups, purchases – in addition to an inventory of the items they want to recommend (such as articles, products, videos, or music) and optionally demographic information (like age or geographic location), and they receive results via an API and only pay for what they use.

Amazon AWS Personalize

Above: A diagram illustrating the Amazon Personalize process.

Image Credit: Amazon

Domino’s, Yamaha, Subway, customer data management and analytics company Segment, Bollywood on-demand video host Spuul, and wedding company Zola are already using Personalize to highlight musical instruments in store catalogs, deliver ingredient and flavor recommendations, and devise individualized style combinations.

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“At Subway, guest experience matters. Using Amazon Personalize, we can quickly deliver personalized recommendations for our endless varieties of ingredients and flavors to fit the unique lifestyles of our busy guests,” said interim chief information officer at Subway. “Amazon Personalize lets our team … curate recommendations without requiring machine learning expertise. We are looking forward to continuing to work with Amazon Personalize to provide the best experience to our guests who want to eat fresh.  We have already successfully tested using Amazon Personalize to provide recommendations to guests making orders from our app, and are excited to expand into personalized app notifications in the near future.”

Personalize is the latest fully managed AWS service to hit general availability after Textract, which uses machine learning to parse data tables, forms, and whole pages for text and data. In somewhat related news, Amazon in March launched AWS Deep Learning Containers, a library of Docker images preinstalled with popular deep learning frameworks.



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