Sticking to its global mission, Amazon Web Services announced yesterday (Feb. 17) that it will now accept bill payments and offer card support in 11 additional currencies — helping its customers save money on foreign transactions and make payments easier.
Among the new services is also the option to select a desired payment currency in the AWS account settings, which will help streamline the payment process by having a default currency set. To the same degree, AWS will also provide the billing in the customer's preferred currency, giving the customer a view of the best exchange rate based on the currency selected. AWS services are able to convert the bill automatically into the currency exchange rate at the time of the bill.
"This will relieve your accounting department of the burden of paying and tracking conversion fees and other costs associated with the use of foreign currencies," Jeff Barr, chief evangelist for the Amazon Web Services, wrote in a company news blog.
The following new options are available to you when you use an eligible Visa or MasterCard to pay your AWS bill:
The new currencies are available when a customer uses an eligible Visa or MasterCard to pay their AWS bill. The currency updates now encompass 29 nations, which makes up a large portion of its more than $30 billion in yearly international sales. The new currencies include: Australian Dollars (AUD); Swiss Francs (CHF); Danish Kroner (DKK); Euros (EUR); British Pounds (GBP); Hong Kong Dollars (HKD); Japanese Yen (JPY); Norwegian Kroner (NOK); New Zealand Dollars (NZD); Swedish Kronor (SEK) and South African Rand (ZAR).
To activate this service, AWS customers simply have to change their account setting to select their local currency preference. Payments will be shown in U.S. dollars but converted using a "competitive" exchange rate into the desired currency, according to Barr. The billing console dashboard, bills page, and payment histories will all be shown in the desired local currency, although prices for specific services will still be initially quoted in dollars. By AWS converting the foreign transactions for the customers, customers can save foreign transaction expenses and avoid foreign conversion fees that Visa and MasterCard might otherwise charge.
AWS has been expanding its operations over the last few months in order to meet the payment needs of its consumers, Barr said. In November, AWS launched a computer service called Lambda that runs developers' code in response to certain events and automatically manages computer resources. This is being used in the B2B payments space by companies like SPS Commerce.