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What is Amazon Forecast?

Last Updated : 28 Mar, 2023
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Pre-requisite: AWS

The frequently used Amazon Forecast is an example of a fully managed service that uses machine learning to produce incredibly accurate forecasts. Using machine learning, Amazon Forecast, which uses the same technology as, integrates time series data with other variables to provide forecasts. Users don’t need any prior knowledge of machine learning to start using Forecast. Users only need to provide prior data and any additional information they believe will alter their estimates. For instance, depending on the time of year and the retailer, demand for a particular color of clothing may change. On its own, it is challenging to identify this complex link, but machine learning is well adapted to do so. Forecasting problems exist in many of the fields that naturally produce time-series data. Just a few examples include database systems, retail sales, medical analysis, capacity planning, sensor network monitoring, financial analysis, and financial analysis.

Benefits of Amazon Forecast

The Amazon Prediction With just a few clicks and no prior machine learning training, Amazon Forecast uses ML to deliver more precise demand projections. The algorithms used in Amazon Forecast are based on the company’s twenty years of forecasting expertise, and they are delivered to developers as a fully managed service, removing the requirement for resource management. The best model for the user’s data is created automatically as a result of Amazon Forecast’s use of machine learning to learn not only the best algorithm for each item but also the best ensemble of algorithms for each item. This method of advanced automated machine learning results in the best model being learned for the user’s data. To help customers understand what factors, such as pricing, holidays, or weather, are influencing its projections, Amazon Forecast includes a forecast Explainability report in the form of affect ratings for all of the user’s forecasts, specific time periods of interest, or selected time periods. Explainability provides you with more knowledge on how to run a user’s business more effectively, and as a result, it forecasts explainability.

Use Cases of Amazon Forecast

  • One application is the addition of ML predictions to users’ SaaS products: The Amazon Forecast enhances the SaaS products’ capacities by incorporating machine learning-based predictions to identify intricate demand correlations.
  • It can be used to improve product demand planning: To predict the required amount of inventory for certain businesses, Amazon Forecast combines historical sales and demand data with information on online traffic, prices, product categories, weather, and holidays.
  • It has a use case for effectively managing resources: You may increase utilization and customer happiness with the help of the Amazon Forecast, which provides accurate resource need forecasting in almost real-time.

Features of Amazon Forecast

  • The information about the local weather is automatically included: By leveraging Weather Index to instantly and cost-free automatically incorporate local weather data into customers’ demand projections, Amazon Forecast can increase forecasting accuracy. Weather conditions have an impact on labor needs, consumer demand patterns, product merchandising choices, and energy consumption needs. By analyzing the most recent 14-day weather forecasts for items that are affected by daily changes and training a model with historical weather data for the locations of your operations, Forecast improves demand projections when customers utilize the Weather Index.
  • It creates forecasts that are probabilistic: Unlike the majority of other forecasting tools, Amazon Forecast by default generates probabilistic estimates at the 10%, 50%, and 90% quantiles. You also have the choice of selecting any quantile in the range of 1% to 99%, including the mean estimate. Users can now choose a prediction based on whether it is more important to save capital costs (over forecasting) or meet customer demand (under forecasting), depending on the needs of the business.
  • It uses any previous time series data to produce more precise forecasts: Almost any historical time series data can be used by Amazon Forecast to create accurate estimates for your company (e.g., pricing, promotions, economic performance measures). To find the complex relationships between time-series data (such as pricing, promotions, and shop traffic) and associated data (like product attributes, floor plans, and store locations), Amazon Forecast evaluates time-series data in the context of retail. By combining time series data with additional parameters, Amazon Forecast can be up to 50% more accurate than non-machine learning forecasting systems.
  • It aids in assessing the forecasting models’ accuracy: To help users evaluate the performance of their forecasting model and contrast it with earlier forecasting models you’ve created, which might have examined a different set of variables or used historical data from a different period, Amazon Forecast offers six different comprehensive accuracy metrics. The data is split into a training and testing set by Amazon Forecast, which enables users to download the forecasts it produces for the testing set and assess the accuracy using a custom metric. Users can also create multiple backtest windows and visualize the metrics to assess model accuracy across various start dates.

Integration of Amazon Forecast with Other Amazon Services

  1. Amazon S3: Amazon simple storage service (S3) is an object storage service that offers scalability, data availability, and security. It retrieval any volume of data. to store and retrieve historical data needed for forecasting, Amazon Forecast and Amazon S3 can be connected.
  2. Amazon Athena: With the help of Amazon Athena, an interactive query service, you may use normal SQL to examine data stored in Amazon S3. To search for and examine past data used for forecasting, Amazon Forecast can be connected with Amazon Athena.
  3. AWS Glue: Amazon Glue is an extract, transform, and load (ETL) service that is fully managed and makes it simple to move data between data storage. For the preparation of historical data needed for forecasting, Amazon Forecast can be connected with AWS Glue.
  4. Amazon SageMaker: A fully managed machine learning service, Amazon SageMaker enables data scientists and developers to swiftly construct, train, and deploy machine learning models. To personalize forecasting models and algorithms, Amazon SageMaker and Amazon Forecast can be connected.
  5. AWS Lambda: This serverless computing solution from AWS enables you to run code without setting up or maintaining servers. To start forecasting jobs and automate forecasting workflows, Amazon Forecast can be connected to AWS Lambda.

Pricing and Scalability of Amazon Forecast


  • The cost of Amazon Forecast is determined by the quantity of data saved and the number of forecasting hours.
  • There are no minimum or up-front fees.
  • Pricing is prorated by the number of hours used, and you only pay for what you use.
  • Depending on the quantity of data kept and the number of forecasting hours, various pricing tiers are offered.


  • Large amounts of data and long forecasting periods can be handled by Amazon Forecast, which is made to be very scalable.
  • It automatically scales up or down in response to requests for forecasts and data volume.
  • Also, you can adjust the instance type and node count to best suit your unique use case.
  • For users all around the world, Amazon Forecast can be set up internationally in several locations to deliver low-latency forecasting results.

Limitations and Challenges


  • To provide precise forecasts, Amazon Forecast needs a lot of past data. The forecasts may be less accurate if you have little historical data.
  • There are few choices for customization, and some sophisticated features, including unique algorithms, are not offered.
  • Particularly for data and use cases with irregular or non-seasonal trends, Amazon Forecast is not appropriate.


  • It can be difficult to set up and configure Amazon Forecast, especially for businesses with large and intricate data sets.
  • Obtaining sufficient amounts of expert knowledge and high-quality data is necessary for training the machine learning models that Amazon Forecast uses.
  • The quality and applicability of the data being utilized for forecasting have a significant impact on the accuracy and effectiveness of Amazon Forecast.
  • It can take more work and knowledge to integrate Amazon Forecast with other programs and systems.

Conclusion and Future Outlook

In conclusion, machine learning algorithms are used by Amazon Forecast, a strong and adaptable forecasting tool, to produce precise and trustworthy time-series projections. It provides a thorough forecasting solution that can be tailored to match the unique demands of your firm by interacting with other Amazon services. Despite various restrictions and difficulties, Amazon Forecast offers a scalable and affordable solution to increase forecasting accuracy and improve business decisions.

Amazon’s continued investment in machine learning and artificial intelligence technology bodes well for the future of Amazon Forecast. Forecast’s accuracy, functionality, and customizability are all expected to continue to be enhanced, along with its connection with other Amazon services and third-party software. Since they provide a more effective and efficient way to manage and forecast large volumes of data, we may anticipate seeing an increase in demand for Forecast and other intelligent forecasting systems as more businesses adopt cloud-based solutions. Additionally, we can anticipate Amazon Forecast to play a significant role in assisting enterprises in making data-driven decisions and remaining competitive in today’s quickly changing business environment, given the rise of IoT devices and the enormous amount of data created.

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