AWS Promotional Credits for Skill Builders 101

Yan Cao Dec 17, 2020
Tips & Tools Build AWS

Many Alexa skill builders leverage the AWS Free Tier to develop and host their skill back-ends. To encourage your full creativity, as a developer as you play with AWS and skill building, the Alexa team has taken the free tier a step further to offer you an additional level of financial support through AWS Promotional Credits! With AWS promotional credits for Alexa skills, you may be eligible to receive a $100 AWS promotional credit valid through the first year after your application, and in subsequent months you may be eligible to receive an additional $100 per month in AWS promotional credits if you incur AWS usage charges for your skill in the previous month.

Additionally, please consider applying for AWS promotional credits for Alexa before you suppress a skill due to high infrastructure costs. This credit program can help cover part of your AWS costs to keep your skills live. The process to apply is easy. Follow the steps at the end of this blog post to apply today!

AWS Free Tier offers a wide range of AWS services that you can use for free up to a certain limit. If you exceed the free tier, you can utilize the AWS credits for Alexa to explore more AWS services and design skills functionality with the financial support that you need. The AWS services eligible for AWS credits for Alexa range from hosting your skill’s back-end with Lambda functions to using DynamoDB to manage your skill’s data. Below are some of the most common AWS services used to build Alexa skills:

  • AWS Lambda: An easy way to host your skill’s back-end is to use AWS Lambda, a service that allows you to run code without having to provision or manage a server. For more advantages to hosting your skill with AWS Lambda, please refer to this technical documentation.
  • Amazon DynamoDB: You can connect and manage your skill’s persistent data with DynamoDB which is a fast and flexible NoSQL database that allows you to easily store data through key-value and document data models.
  • Amazon S3: You can store media files on Amazon S3, an object storage service focused on scalability, availability, security and performance.
  • Amazon EC2: If you decide to host your custom skill as a web service, you may want to look into Amazon EC2 which is a service that provides secure and re-sizable compute capacity.

Additionally, ASK SDKs offer native integration with various AWS services. Please check out this documentation for details.

Take the following steps to apply for AWS credits for Alexa:

Step 1: Build and publish your first Alexa skill. If you are new to Alexa skill building, we have lots of different tutorials and videos to help get you started:

Step 2: Submit your skill for certification. If your skill passes certification, it will be published to the Alexa Skills Store. Now you just need to apply for the AWS promotional credits for Alexa skills by filling out this form. To apply, all you need is your Amazon developer vendor ID, AWS account ID, and contact information.

Step 3: If your application is accepted, a $100 initial credit will be applied to your AWS account automatically the following month. This initial credit will be valid for 12 months. 

Step 4: After receiving your initial credit, if your AWS usage surpasses the AWS Free Usage Tier in a specific month, you will automatically receive a $100 monthly credit in the following month. Different from the initial credit, this monthly credit is only valid for the month the credit is applied.

For more information on AWS Promotional Credits, see the AWS Promotional Credit Terms & Conditions.

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