COLORADO SPRINGS — Boeing said April 6 it has expanded partnerships with three major cloud computing providers to digitize more of its engineering and manufacturing processes.

The company said multi-year agreements with Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Cloud and Microsoft mark a “significant investment in the company’s digital future.” 

Most of Boeing’s applications are currently hosted and maintained through on-site servers that are managed by the company or external partners.

Many of these legacy systems are aging to the point where they are posing infrastructure challenges, according to Boeing, requiring “considerable work to maintain” and limiting its ability to deploy digital solutions across the company.

Boeing said offloading more cloud operations to the world’s largest cloud computing companies simplifies processes and also improves security. 

“Through these partnerships, hundreds of applications will migrate to the cloud,” a Boeing spokesperson said.

“This cloud arrangement will support the entire Boeing business, and power applications across our portfolio serving commercial, defense and space customers.”

Scalability is one of the biggest challenges to traditional hosting solutions, according to Susan Doniz, Boeing’s chief information officer and senior vice president of Information Technology & Data Analytics.

“Cloud adoption unlocks those challenges by allowing developers to tap into additional storage or capacity when they need it. It’s like having a nationwide broadband network and we’re still using dial-up.”

Matt Garman, senior vice president of sales and marketing for AWS, said its cloud infrastructure will enable Boeing to create new solutions to enhance services including Amazon Air, the cargo airline that uses Boeing aircraft to exclusively transport Amazon packages.

Jason Rainbow writes about satellite telecom, space finance and commercial markets for SpaceNews. He has spent more than a decade covering the global space industry as a business journalist. Previously, he was Group Editor-in-Chief for Finance Information...