Amazon's cloud business is now releasing numbers that show something important about its customer base: loyalty.
Amazon disclosed in its latest quarterly report that it had $12.4 billion in backlog revenue for Amazon Web Services. The balance represents the total value of signed contracts that didn't get reported as revenue because the agreements run for multiple years.
On average, the remaining life on those contracts is 3.2 years, which means Amazon has over $12 billion of sales that will turn into revenue over that stretch. The contracts have different terms, so it's unclear exactly when the revenue will be recognized.
The new disclosure is the latest sign of AWS' maturity as a software business, expanding from a pay-as-you-go service for smaller startups to a multi-year contract model that targets enterprise customers. The increase in backlog revenue gives investors a clearer sense of the strength of the business.
"This is further confirmation to the notion that Amazon's AWS business has great scale and is becoming increasingly predictable with longer-term, enterprise customers," Tom Roderick, an analyst Stifel Nicolaus, told CNBC.
Microsoft reported contracted revenue of $61 billion as of the end of March and expects to recognize 60 percent of that over the next 12 months. Salesforce said in February that it has $13.3 billion of business that's contracted but not billed.