The best way to think of the free tier to Amazon Web Services is as a stepping-stone. It allows you to get your feet wet with the basic mechanisms of AWS and EC2; to understand Amazon’s handling of virtual machine instances, storage, data, and networking; and to create an item that can eventually be hosted on a full-blown, for-pay AWS instance. It also lets you learn how to manage and constrain AWS usage. If you’re not careful, you may end up paying for your “free” AWS usage after all.
Computerworld Cloud Computing