Amazon Athena
User Guide

January 19, 2018

Published on 2018-01-19

Athena uses Presto, an open-source distributed query engine, to run queries.

With Athena, there are no versions to manage. We have transparently upgraded the underlying engine in Athena to a version based on Presto version 0.172. No action is required on your end.

With the upgrade, you can now use Presto 0.172 Functions and Operators, including Presto 0.172 Lambda Expressions in Athena.

Major updates for this release, including the community-contributed fixes, include:

  • Support for ignoring headers. You can use the skip.header.line.count property when defining tables, to allow Athena to ignore headers.

  • Support for the CHAR(n) data type in STRING functions. The range for CHAR(n) is [1.255], while the range for VARCHAR(n) is [1,65535].

  • Support for correlated subqueries.

  • Support for Presto Lambda expressions and functions.

  • Improved performance of the DECIMAL type and operators.

  • Support for filtered aggregations, such as SELECT sum(col_name) FILTER, where id > 0.

  • Push-down predicates for the DECIMAL, TINYINT, SMALLINT, and REAL data types.

  • Support for quantified comparison predicates: ALL, ANY, and SOME.

  • Added functions: arrays_overlap(), array_except(), levenshtein_distance(), codepoint(), skewness(), kurtosis(), and typeof().

  • Added a variant of the from_unixtime() function that takes a timezone argument.

  • Added the bitwise_and_agg() and bitwise_or_agg() aggregation functions.

  • Added the xxhash64() and to_big_endian_64() functions.

  • Added support for escaping double quotes or backslashes using a backslash with a JSON path subscript to the json_extract() and json_extract_scalar() functions. This changes the semantics of any invocation using a backslash, as backslashes were previously treated as normal characters.

For a complete list of functions and operators, see SQL Queries, Functions, and Operators in this guide, and Presto 0.172 Functions.

Athena does not support all of Presto's features. For more information, see Limitations.