Amazon Web Services (AWS) has announced that it will invest $15.5bn (Y2.3trn) into Japan’s data centres to consolidate AWS’ cloud infrastructure in the country. 

The money is expected to be used to create more data centres as the volume of data needing to be analysed and stored grows alongside the spread of AI. 

AWS is currently the world’s biggest cloud computing company and has already spent nearly Y1.5trn in Japan to store customer data.  

Although data analytics is a mature market, AI is a recent and significant innovation within the field as identified by research and data analytics company GlobalData in its 2023 thematic intelligence report into data analytics

Machine learning can now create more accurate data-driven analysis and analyse a larger pool of data at a faster rate than ever before. 

Research director at GlobalData Josep Bori explained that AI is acting as a catalyst for furthering cloud infrastructure demand. 

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“On one hand, the massive amounts of data and computing capacity required to train neural networks, and particularly large language models in the case of generative AI [GenAI], is driving a further acceleration in the build-up of more cloud data centre capacity,” Bori began. 

“On the other hand, for many AI use cases where there is interaction with customers, the need for low latency and fast response times requires the use of edge computing architectures whereby heavy data computation is distributed between the central cloud data centre and edge locations, typically in large cities where most users happen to be,” he said. 

Populous cities such as Tokyo and Osaka could soon see an increase in the number cloud data centres being built.  

Locations outside of Japan will also experience this trend. 

AWS has previously pledged to invest $12bn into India’s data ecosystem by 2030 and Google announced today that it commenced construction of a $1bn data centre in the UK

“We know that the boom in GenAI in particular will require large quantities of data centre capacity. This could mean that by 2030 the world will require 500–1,000% more capacity than we currently have,” stated executive VP and general manager of Iron Mountain data centres Mark Kidd. 

“However, with the ceaseless human demand for better, faster digitalisation, and data volumes expected to grow exponentially year on year for the foreseeable future, data centre operators and its customers have an opportunity and responsibility to ensure that ‘more data’ doesn’t mean ‘more emissions’,” he added. 

Kidd’s concern for eco-friendly data storage will become paramount as AI creates more demand for bigger data centres and infrastructure. 

Inefficient methods of storage and the storage of redundant data will be key areas of misused energy if companies fail to recognise them.