Apache Flink enables you to easily create real-time streaming analytics and ETL applications by using the familiar SQL language — no coding required. Aiven now offers Apache Flink as a managed service, even if we are still in beta.
What is Apache Flink?
Apache Flink is a framework and distributed processing engine for stateful computations over unbounded and bounded data streams. It is a perfect companion to Apache Kafka event streaming platform, to perform reliable and scalable real-time filtering, enriching, aggregating, alerting and analysing of the events.
Combining the ease of doing event stream processing with SQL language with the simplicity of Aiven managed services, makes the combination of Aiven for Apache Kafka and Aiven for Apache Flink the easiest event stream processing solution in the market. And it can be further extended with the other Aiven services, e.g. Aiven for PostgreSQL and Aiven for OpenSearch, to build even more complete real-time analytics data pipelines.
Looking at the statistics on the Apache Software Foundation blog post Apache in 2020 — By The Digits, in many categories, Apache Flink was one of the most active Apache projects during 2020. This thriving community powering Apache Flink — where also Aiven actively participates — ensures that the technology is future-proof and evolves quickly to support new kinds of use cases.
What is it used for?
Apache Flink is widely used in various industries to speed up business decisions. The real-time insights derived from on-the-fly data are essential elements in today’s competitive business environments.
In e-commerce, for example, Apache Flink often powers the personalization of the contextual buyer experience personalization in real-time, like recommendation engines or search result optimization. Other common uses for Apache Flink are real-time monitoring of the goods processes from order to delivery, where it can alert on anomalies before customers are impacted; and to avoid out-of-stock situations in inventory and supply chain processes by offering real-time management capabilities.
Another example could be the finance industry, where Apache Flink is commonly powering critical business processes such as credit card fraud detection, real-time trading solutions and credit scoring applications. And you can find similar examples from just about any industry.
What does “beta” mean in this case?
In Aiven terminology, a beta service means that you can get a head start on your road into the world of real-time stream processing.
Aiven for Apache Flink beta can be used for development work and for testing production grade workloads, but not for full production use. This is the perfect time to get started. You can develop your real-time streaming applications, provide your feedback as you go, and get precisely the features and capabilities that you need implemented in it.
A word of caution, though: you can use our free Basic level support with the beta service, but higher level support packages are currently not available and our standard SLA terms do not apply.
How to get started?
If you’re new to Aiven, first create an Aiven account. After that:
- Log in to the Aiven console.
- Create an Aiven for Apache Flink service.
- Define your data integrations. If you’re a new user, make sure to create a Kafka or PostgreSQL service that you can use as source for Flink jobs.
- Write your first stream processing job — with SQL.
For more information please visit our Aiven for Apache Flink beta product page and check the product documentation here in the Developer Portal. You can also take a look at the Flink themed blog posts.
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