Jeff Bailey
Written by Jeff Bailey
Learning resources, opinions, and facts about technology.

Learn AWS Amplify

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The Basics

AWS Amplify is a command-line utility that generates web and mobile applications on Amazon Web Services (AWS) servers. It is written in node and requires NodeJS. My recommendation is to use nvm to install NodeJS if you’re installing NodeJS for the first time.

Use Cases

  • You posted your app idea on Craigslist, but no developers are willing to work for free, so you’ll do it yourself!
  • You want to create a proof of concept application quickly.
  • You would like to evaluate several different technologies without having to learn the internals.
  • You want to do something more than basic form collection.

You might want to evaluate Honeycode if you’re doing basic data collection from web and mobile platforms.


The latest and greatest installation instructions for a react application work well from beginning to end. The last time I tried to learn AWS Amplify and follow the AWS Amplify instructions, it ended in a whole lot of errors. This time around, everything worked as expected.

Amplify Choices

When creating an amplify application you can build either a web or a mobile application. In the case of the mobile applications you can base your apps on web frameworks like React and Ionic but also gain the ability to manipulate system level APIs.

Amplify Console

Running this command pops you into the AWS console.

amplify console

I’ve found that clicking on the app name after running this command is the most useful route. I’m able to get to the build status of the project since I decided to automated my deployment with a GitHub repository.


If you’re looking to update your API you’ll want to push up the changes with this command.

amplify push


If you’ve made changes to your schema you’ll want to update your API.

Run this command to push the changes and generate your schema.

amplify update api

Wrapping Up

I wrote a short article because there isn’t a lot to explain with AWS Amplify at a high level. It can get complicated when you’re working to keep your resources in order. If you’re not looking to do something complicated and want to do some data collection with a few bells and whistles, AWS Amplify will fit the bill.

Learn AWS Amplify – Beyond the Basics

So far there aren’t many resources for learning AWS Amplify but here are a few.