Cloud service to receive up to 30000 emails a minute

David asked:

I am building a business where I want the infrastructure to be able to handle up to 30000 emails per minute during peak periods. The question is what kinds of services offer this? I expect to download the emails using SMTP or similar. I expect each email to have a total attachment size of 2 mb, and might have several attachments.

I have considered utilizing Parse API from SendGrid, but I am worried because they offer this service for free. I have contacted them and I am waiting for answer. Are there any better and more suitable alternatives?

My answer:


On the back of my napkin, for bandwidth, I’m coming up with 30,000 emails per minute at 2MB per message equals OC-192. Depending on location, those have six-digit and sometimes seven-digit monthly bills.

Then there’s the cost of the several racks of servers you’re going to need to process all those incoming messages. Then the 85TB or so of new data you have to store each day is going to add on several more racks, and more racks, and more racks…within a few weeks at most, you’re going to need your own data center, so you may as well start by building one.

How many millions of dollars are you willing to pay just to set it up? You’re just not going to get this out of a free service, and it’s just way too unusual for anybody to be offering it as an off-the-shelf managed service.

I recommend you spec out your idea much more carefully.


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