What is AWS EMR and its Role in Data Analytics?

By: Sean Cummings

January 16, 2023

What is AWS EMR and its Role in Data Analytics?

Have you been asking what AWS or EMR is? Amazon Web Services (AWS), previously known as Amazon Elastic MapReduce (EMR), is a cloud computing platform that provides supervised architectures—that can be used to run data processing frameworks cost-effectively, efficiently, and securely.

In this system, large volumes of data are processed using open-source technologies, such as Apache Spark, Apache Hive, Apache HBase, Apache Flink, Apache Hudi, and Presto.

Throughout this article, we will examine what Amazon Elastic MapReduce is and how it works with data analytics, among other things.

What is AWS or EMR?

The complexity of capturing, storing, and analyzing all of the data collected by companies often makes it difficult for them to gain more insight and value from it. In addition to growing in quantity and variety—data comes from more sources and originates from more places. As such, different applications and lines of business require secure access to analyze them. 

These issues can be solved with AWS or EMR. It helps organizations analyze and process large data sets more efficiently and effectively by using managed clusters on the former. The frameworks, along with other related open-source projects such as Apache Hive and Apache Pig, can be used to process and sort data for analytics and business intelligence.

Also, you can use AWS or EMR to transform and move large data sets into and out of other AWS storage services, such as Amazon Simple Storage Services (Amazon S3) and Amazon DynamoDB.

How Does Amazon EMR Operate?

An organization’s data is collected into a data lake and analyzed using open-source distributed processing frameworks, such as:

  • Apache Spark
  • Apache Hadoop
  • Apache Storm
  • Presto

Among data lakes, Amazon S3 is the most popular storage infrastructure. By using Amazon Elastic MapReduce, you can store data in Amazon S3 and compute as necessary to process that data. EMR clusters can be launched within minutes. You do not have to worry about node provisioning, cluster setup, Hadoop configurations, or cluster tuning. 

An Overview of AWS EMR’s Features

Let’s take a look at some of the features of AWS and EMR:


AWS or EMR simplifies the creation and management of large data platforms and apps. In addition to easy provisioning, controlled scaling, and cluster reconfiguration, EMR Studio supports cohesive development.


AWS or EMR lets you supply as much capacity as you need quickly and efficiently, as well as add multiple capacities manually or automatically. In particular, this can be helpful if your processing requirements change frequently or unexpectedly.


AWS or EMR offers a wide range of flexibility. It provides several data storage options, such as Amazon S3, Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS), and Amazon DynamoDB.

Integrated Tools for Big Data

Among Hadoop technologies supported by AWS EMR are Apache Spark, Apache Hive, Presto, and Apache HBase. With EMR, data scientists are able to run deep learning and its technologies, such as TensorFlow and Apache MXNet, alongside scenario tools and frameworks, using bootstrapping operations.

Access to Data

The AWS EMR application processes use the EC2 instance account by default when calling other Amazon Web Services. There are three ways in which EMR manages user access to Amazon S3 data in multi-tenant clusters.

What Role Does AWS or EMR Play in Data Analytics?

In 2020, researchers at Statista estimated the volume of data created, stored, copied, and consumed exceeded 64 zettabytes (ZB), which is about 64 trillion gigabytes (GB). By the year 2025, this number will reach 181 ZB.  

You will likely find a large portion of this data to be valuable for your business. By analyzing risk, you can improve your product and communicate with consumers more effectively. However, in order to extract, sort, process, and analyze this information, you’ll need the right tools.

In such cases, this is where Amazon Elastic MapReduce (EMR) can come in handy. 

AWS or EMR – Pros and Cons

Amazon’s EMR is nearly unbeatable in terms of cloud-based services, especially when combined with some of its other web-based services. While its benefits are self-evident and numerous, it does have limitations.

Below is a summary of some of Amazon Elastic MapReduce’s pros and cons.


Physical Infrastructure Costs are Reduced

With EMR, organizations no longer have to purchase and maintain physical servers. Instead of monthly fees, it charges you per second for the features you use.


By eliminating the need for in-house servers to handle big data computation tasks, EMR can save time for system administrators. With Amazon EMR, you won’t have to worry about most of these details because it will reduce the amount of time your company spends on administrative tasks.

As a result, you won’t have to spend time manually provisioning computations and storing resources since AWS EMR automatically scales them.

Optimized Resource Utilization

Storage and computing are decoupled in EMR. It enables automatic scaling up and down of Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) instances and clusters as required. As soon as you are finished with resources, you can release them.

High Level of Customer Service

Amazon EMR provides 24/7 customer service by default, and fast spin-up times for EC2 instances are another benefit. In essence, this is an EMR service that can be run on an AWS Virtual Private Cloud. This way, data security can be increased.


Complex Interface

This complaint seems to recur with most Amazon Web Services products. Beginners may find the interface confusing. To migrate their resources and configure Amazon EMR, organizations often hire certified professionals or pay for training. 

Online documentation and tutorials are quite limited, and the service may require you to first spend some time getting used to its intricacies.

Only Available on Amazon Cloud Storage

Amazon EMR cannot analyze or mine data stored on other cloud storage platforms. In the event that you already store your data with another cloud provider, you’ll need to move it to one of Amazon’s cloud storage or database solutions. 

There are other limitations to AWS or EMR that are service-based. As an example, Amazon Elastic MapReduce studio is only available in certain regions, such as the East US, West US, Asia-Pacific, Canada, and EU. There can be only one Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) with a maximum of five subnets per EMR studio.

Nevertheless, you may create multiple EMR studios and assign them to different VPCs and subnets.

Let Your Cloud Journey Begins with Laminar Consulting Service!

AWS or EMR can help you manage Apache Hadoop hassle-free and replace your rigid in-house cluster infrastructure. Additionally, it can significantly reduce the time it takes to process data. The pricing, however, can be a little confusing, as with most AWS products.

Migrating critical application workloads to AWS cloud services requires the assistance of cloud experts. With cloud technologies becoming more prevalent, staying competitive will only become more difficult. Learn how cloud migration can benefit your business by connecting with our team.For more information about cloud migration services, contact us at 888-531-9995 at Laminar Consulting Service today!

Share this Article:

linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram chevron-down