AWS vs Heroku vs DigitalOcean

This article will explore the differences and similarities between AWS vs Heroku vs DigitalOcean. It will cover the main features and the pricing structure. 

If your company is looking for cloud services, then there are many options available for you in the market. Companies use cloud services for various benefits that include:

  • It allows scalability and flexibility.
  • Very little cost on infrastructure upgrade.
  • Allows faster time to market.
  • Increased security.
  • Increased support for disaster recovery.

Thanks to all these advantages, many online companies find IaaS and PaaS providers the best bet to expand their business online at a minimal cost.

When you are looking for a cloud service provider, then the most popular of them all is the Amazon Web Services (AWS). However, in addition to AWS, there are also others. 

Here we have compared three top Cloud service providers in terms of their features and prices. Go through each one of them and choose one that is perfect for your business needs.

Keep reading to know more about DigitalOcean vs Heroku vs AWS.

What is AWS?

AWS (Amazon Web Services) is one of the top cloud computing platforms. This platform with 200 fully featured services is created by Amazon. 

Amazon Web Services is used by government agencies, start-ups, and large enterprises to become more agile by using powerful computing tools, content delivery services, and data storage.

Amazon launched AWS in 2006. It offers a pay-as-you-go cloud computing service, in which the user can increase the storage and computing power it needs as its business grows.

It has data centers in 190 countries and offers numerous tools and solutions for software developers and enterprises 

AWS Features

AWS has a comprehensive set of tools and solutions for both small and big enterprises. Some of the important features that make AWS the market leader in cloud computing and storage services include the following:

  • It Is Easy to Sign Up

 If you want to get registered in AWS, then you don’t need to sign any agreement. You require a valid email ID and your credit/debit card details. Simply fill in all the requisites information and you are good to go.

  • Per Hour Billing

The billing process is quite simple, and each service of the AWS has a micro billing. Therefore, if you have Amazon Elastic Computing Cloud service, then you are charged on an hourly basis.

The If you hire the Amazon Simple Storage Service, then your chares will depend on how much GB of storage space you have used. The entire process is very straightforward, and the billing dashboard gives you transparency and information about your build service report which is easy to read and understand.

  • Scalability and Elasticity

The AWS offers easy scalability so that you don’t have to worry about your storage and other cloud computing needs when your business grows. You can easily scale up or scale down the computing and storage resources as per the requirement of your business.

  • Availability

Amazon Web Services has around 190 data centers spread across the world. These data centers are connected with low latency network links. A business can choose one or more than one of these centers for compliance or proximity to the customer.

  • Storage

The Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3) offers your business scalable object storage. You can use it for data backup, analytics, and collection. You can store data and files as S3 objects and their size can range to a maximum of 5 GB in the S3 buckets, wherein they are kept organized.

The Amazon Elastic Block Store offers a solution for persistent data when you are using EC2. And the Amazon Elastic File System offers you cloud-based file storage.

You can easily migrate your important data to the cloud through transport devices, like Snowmobile, and AWS Snowball or you can use the AWS Storage Gateway to allow on-premises apps to access the cloud data.

  • Databases, Data Management

The Amazon Relational Database Service offers you a relational database management system through Oracle, SQL Server, MySQL, MariaDB, and a highly sophisticated and robust database called Amazon Aurora. You can also use the NoSQL database through Amazon DynamoDB.

  • Security and Governance

It offers a very high grade of security services based on the cloud including the AWS Identity and Access Management.

This system allows the administrator to keep track of user access to the resources. The AWS organization service allows your business to establish and manage a range of policies for multiple AWS accounts.

The Amazon Web Services also offers a tool that automatically checks for any potential security risks and the Amazon Inspector carefully analyses the AWS environment. For any vulnerability that can affect the security and compliance of the AWS environment.

  • Mobile Development

The AWS mobile Home offers you a range of tools and services for mobile app development. These tools include code samples, AWS Mobile SDK, and libraries.

  • Flexibility

AWS allows you to choose the operating system of your choice. Similarly, you can also choose your database type, programming language, or the location where you want your content to be delivered.

This is extremely helpful for businesses as they can now focus more on development rather than spending their time and energy on learning new technologies and building their infrastructure.

The AWS CloudFormation allows you to migrate quite easily from your on-premises application to the cloud. Additionally, the AWS OpsWorks helps you to update numerous resources quickly.

  • Stability and Trust

When you use AWS, then you are assured of the durability and security of a multitude of services on this platform. This is the reason why many multinational companies like Adobe and Netflix host their data on AWS.

  • Easy to Learn

The AWS offers detailed documentation for each of the services it offers. It also provides AWS training and certification programs. This makes learning this platform easy and simple.

AWS Pricing

AWS allows you to pay-as-you-go pricing strategy for more than 200 of its cloud services. Several of its popular how services are available for free, whereas for others you have to pay only for that portion which you have used. 

Keep reading to know more about Heroku vs AWS vs DigitalOcean.

What is Heroku?

Heroku is a cloud service platform. Its main focus is on providing support to customer-focused apps. It helps in application development and deployment. It’s an excellent option for startups and developers looking to accelerate backend development.

As Heroku can manage both hardware and servers, businesses can direct their focus on improving and scaling up their apps. They don’t have to worry about upgrading the technology infrastructure that supports them.

The platform also provides the app developers with numerous choices concerning the programming languages like PHP, Node JS, Python, Ruby, Java, Scala, and Clojure.

Heroku Features

This sophisticated and robust cloud platform offers numerous features that include the following:

  • It Supports Many Modern Open-Source Languages

It offers support to multiple programming languages like Ruby, Java, Node, Go, PHP, Scala, and Clojure. Therefore, as an app developer, you can choose the right technology that is perfect for your app. 

  • Smart Containers, Elastic Runtime

This platform allows your apps to run in dynos, which are smart containers. They are part of the Elastic runtime platform. They provide load balancing, orchestration, enterprise-level security, logging, and much more.

  • Simple Horizontal and Vertical Scalability

This highly secure and robust cloud platform allows you to scale up either horizontally or vertically with your growing business.

It is used by very high-demanding applications from around the world. You can easily scale up your app quite easily and never face any downtime issues.

  • Trusted Application Operations

You get highly professional service 24/7. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about the security and maintenance of your backend on the cloud and focus your attention to create a highly engaging and compelling customer experience with your app.

  • Leading Platforms Tools and Services Ecosystem

You can easily integrate apps into add-ons. You can also customize the language stacks with Buildpacks and also jumpstart the widgets using the Buttons that you can get from the Heroku Elements marketplace.

Heroku Pricing

The Heroku Salesforce pricing includes the following:

  • Enterprise

Call for custom pricing

  • Performance

$25-$500 per dyno/month

  • Standard 1X/2X

$25-$500 per dyno/month

  • Hobby

$7 per dyno/month

Keep reading to know more about Heroku vs DigitalOcean vs AWS.

What is DigitalOcean?

Digital Ocean is a cloud hosting company that allows developers to use virtual servers and object storage. This cloud computing vendor offers Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), and it’s a fantastic option for software developers and startups to simplify cloud deployment. 

To deploy the DigitalOcean IaaS environment, you have to use a special virtual machine instance, which is private. Such a private virtual instance is called “droplet.”

You can choose the size of the droplet, and the data center in which it will run. You can also select the operating system it will use (Ubuntu, Fedora, Core OS, Debian, CentOS, or FreeBSD).

DigitalOcean Features

Some of the important features of DigitalOcean that make it so popular for the app developers include the following:

  • Storage Limits

Your hosting plan has a predetermined storage limit. However, if you wish to scale up this limit, then you can do it by paying a specified amount.

  • Bandwidth Allowance

The DigitalOcean gives you the summary of the data that you and your visitors have uploaded or downloaded over a specified period. For additional bandwidth, you have to pay a premium.

  • Control Panel Integration

To use a graphical user interface, you can integrate the hosting plan with either a propriety web hosting control panel or an open-source panel. It would help you to access the additional web hosting management features.

  • CMS Support

The DigitalOcean allows a range of content management systems (CMS). It can be used to manage the website. You also get a rapid installation of various CMS tools.

  • Web Framework Support

This robust web hosting provides you with a range of server-side coding languages along with various web frameworks. Therefore, you have a wide option from which you can choose the right programming language and framework to develop a highly functional and feature-rich app.

  • Database Support

You get to access various database support. These databases can include SQL Server, MySQL, PostgreSQL, and many more. You can choose the right database for your app so that you can provide your app users with an amazing experience.

  • Security Tools

It offers a very robust and sophisticated security system that includes site backup, firewalls, malware detection, spam detection, and other features all within your hosting plan.

DigitalOcean Pricing

The eight different pricing editions of DigitalOcean includes the following.

  • Container Registry

Starting at $0.00

  • Droplets

Starting at $5.00

  • Managed Kubernetes

Starting at $10.00

  • App Platform (PaaS)

Starting at $0.00

  • Managed Databases

Starting at $15.00

  • Spaces (Object Storage)

Starting at $5.00

  • Volumes (Block Storage)

Starting at $10.00

  • Load Balancers

Starting at $10.00

AWS vs Heroku vs DigitalOcean Comparison

The first difference between these three cloud providers is that Heroku is a platform as a service and delivers fully managed services. DigitalOcean and AWS are cloud providers that provide infrastructure and value-added services like PaaS, FaaS, BaaS, etc.

AWS provides the most comprehensive features and a broader number of data center regions. Digital is investing heavily in new features like Serverless Functions, App Platform, and Managed Databases. Still, the region coverage and quantity of features are limited compared to AWS.

Heroku works with only two regions (USA/Europe) and only offers a broader coverage (up to 6 regions) for premium customers using the Private Spaces offering. Heroku provides products and services that suit customers looking for a managed service, hassle-free, and easy to scale.

Pricing-wise, DigitalOcean has very predictable and easy-to-understand pricing. Generally speaking, it’s cheaper than AWS and Heroku. AWS has a more sophisticated and complex pricing structure. On-demand pricing is typically more expensive than Digital Ocean, but considering long-term commitments via reserved instances, the price is very competitive.

Heroku is the most expensive option but offers a managed service and an additional value layer on top of a raw virtual instances infrastructure. The pricing model offers several tiers for purposes like non-production apps, business apps, mission-critical apps, etc.

OverviewComprehensive cloud platform.Plataform as a service to to build, run, and operate applications entirely in the cloud.Cloud infrastructure provider to easily build, test, manage, and scale applications. 
Year of foundation200620072011
Parent CompanyAmazonSalesforceIndependent
Data Center Locations26 RegionsUSA
Other regions on Private Spaces
8 Regions
FocusEnterprise centricDeveloper centricDeveloper centric
Free TierYesYesYes
Pricing ModelPay as you goPay as you goPay as you go
AdvantagesLargest cloud
Super flexibile
Variety of services
Managed service
Worry free deployment
Easy to scale
Easy of use
Predictable pricing
Great documentation
Featured ClientsGE
Capital One
Click Funnels
Cerberus Tech
Project Sitara

The following articles are helpful and provide a detailed comparison of each provider:


Now, you have a broad idea about the various features of these three popular cloud service providers and the price package in which their services are available.

You should carefully compare all three of them and then choose one that offers you the most benefits for your business needs and is also within your budget.

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What is AWS?

It is a cloud storage and computing platform created by Amazon.

What is Heroku?

It is an Platform as a Service provider.

What is DigitalOcean?

It is a cloud hosting provider that provides computing services to business entities.

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