Amazon says its cloud has become more Internet of Things (Iot)-friendly with the general availability launch of AWS IoT, which is designed for connected devices.

Amazon introduced AWS IoT as a beta offering in October. As AWS Chief Evangelist Jeff Barr explained at the time, the goal behind AWS IoT is to provide a cloud platform that small devices with limited system resources can use, even if they have only intermittent connectivity.

Toward that end, AWS IoT features a SQL-like programming interface and lightweight communication protocols. It's also designed to be highly scalable so that it can accommodate an ever-changing and ever-growing number of devices, to which the service assigns unique identifiers.

Amazon announced the general availability of AWS IoT on Dec. 18. It also said several companies, including Philips and Scout Alarm, are already using the service.

To be sure, bringing the cloud and IoT together basically means marrying the biggest buzzwords from 2012 and 2015, respectively (even though IoT is not actually new and neither, for that matter, is the cloud). But by focusing on technology that is actually tailored to IoT devices in a legitimate way -- not just rebranding an existing cloud service by adding another buzzword to its name -- Amazon seems to be doing something truly worthwhile at the intersection of IoT and the cloud.