DigitalOcean vs. Heroku Platform

Overview
ProductRatingMost Used ByProduct SummaryStarting Price
DigitalOcean
Score 8.2 out of 10
N/A
DigitalOcean is an infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) platform from the company of the same name headquartered in New York. It is known for its support of managed Kubernetes clusters and “droplets” feature.
$5
Starting Price Per Month
Heroku Platform
Score 8.5 out of 10
N/A
The Heroku Platform, now from Salesforce, is a platform-as-a-service based on a managed container system, with integrated data services and ecosystem for deploying modern apps. It takes an app-centric approach for software delivery, integrated with developer tools and workflows. It’s three main tool are: Heroku Developer Experience (DX), Heroku Operational Experience (OpEx), and Heroku Runtime. Heroku Developer Experience (DX) Developers deploy directly from tools like…
$85
per month
Pricing
DigitalOceanHeroku Platform
Editions & Modules
1GB-16GB
$5.00
Starting Price Per Month
8GB-160GB
$60.00
Starting Price Per Month
Production
$25.00
per month
Advanced
$250.00
per month
Offerings
Pricing Offerings
DigitalOceanHeroku Platform
Free Trial
NoNo
Free/Freemium Version
NoNo
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
NoNo
Entry-level Setup FeeNo setup feeNo setup fee
Additional Details
More Pricing Information
Community Pulse
DigitalOceanHeroku Platform
Considered Both Products
DigitalOcean
Chose DigitalOcean
DigitalOcean is not quite as simple as Heroku to get up and running, but it provides a better price point and more configurability. However, in my opinion it's much simpler to get up and running with than AWS OpsWorks and even Google App Engine. It also provides a better price …
Chose DigitalOcean
Cheaper than Heroku which is prohibitively expensive for a small self-funded startup. We quickly outgrew their free tier and migrated to DigitalOcean. AWS is more feature complete however, we found its maintenance overly confusing and not as well thought out. For many use cases …
Chose DigitalOcean
DigitalOcean's dead simple pricing and solid but basic feature set combine for a no-nonsense way to get your product shipped. Its API makes it nicely scriptable/automate-able compared to traditional shared hosting providers like Dreamhost. I think it compares most closely with …
Chose DigitalOcean
DigitalOcean easily has the most flexibility, best pricing, and best ease of use, of the competitors we had used. Rackspace offers better engineer access and support, but this comes at a very significant cost. Heroku offers a cloud container system, which has less maintenance, …
Heroku Platform
Chose Heroku Platform
  • EngineYard is much more similar to Heroku than the other two services I've compared it to. Frankly, I don't see much advantage of EngineYard over Heroku - EngineYard feels a little more "bare metal" than Heroku and it's easy to get to log into a "real server," but it's …
Chose Heroku Platform
Heroku Platform is cheaper to begin with compared to DigitalOcean or Amazon Fargate. The configuration user interface is also arguably easier to understand. With its user friendliness and cheaper tiers, Heroku Platform was our pick to host some of our applications that were …
Chose Heroku Platform
Heroku has the easy facility to deploy and host applications while others have to configure a lot. The price of the services is high for others. But within Heroku pricing and easy to maintain under the same roof.
Top Pros
Top Cons
Features
DigitalOceanHeroku Platform
Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS)
Comparison of Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) features of Product A and Product B
DigitalOcean
9.0
32 Ratings
10% above category average
Heroku Platform
-
Ratings
Service-level Agreement (SLA) uptime10.027 Ratings00 Ratings
Dynamic scaling8.228 Ratings00 Ratings
Elastic load balancing7.220 Ratings00 Ratings
Pre-configured templates10.026 Ratings00 Ratings
Monitoring tools10.031 Ratings00 Ratings
Pre-defined machine images10.030 Ratings00 Ratings
Operating system support10.030 Ratings00 Ratings
Security controls7.728 Ratings00 Ratings
Automation8.02 Ratings00 Ratings
Platform-as-a-Service
Comparison of Platform-as-a-Service features of Product A and Product B
DigitalOcean
-
Ratings
Heroku Platform
8.1
43 Ratings
0% above category average
Ease of building user interfaces00 Ratings7.626 Ratings
Scalability00 Ratings8.343 Ratings
Platform management overhead00 Ratings7.642 Ratings
Workflow engine capability00 Ratings8.329 Ratings
Platform access control00 Ratings7.042 Ratings
Services-enabled integration00 Ratings8.041 Ratings
Development environment creation00 Ratings8.738 Ratings
Development environment replication00 Ratings8.637 Ratings
Issue monitoring and notification00 Ratings8.241 Ratings
Issue recovery00 Ratings8.438 Ratings
Upgrades and platform fixes00 Ratings8.443 Ratings
Best Alternatives
DigitalOceanHeroku Platform
Small Businesses
Akamai Connected Cloud
Akamai Connected Cloud
Score 9.0 out of 10
AWS Elastic Beanstalk
AWS Elastic Beanstalk
Score 9.1 out of 10
Medium-sized Companies
SAP on IBM Cloud
SAP on IBM Cloud
Score 9.4 out of 10
AWS Elastic Beanstalk
AWS Elastic Beanstalk
Score 9.1 out of 10
Enterprises
SAP on IBM Cloud
SAP on IBM Cloud
Score 9.4 out of 10
AWS Elastic Beanstalk
AWS Elastic Beanstalk
Score 9.1 out of 10
All AlternativesView all alternativesView all alternatives
User Ratings
DigitalOceanHeroku Platform
Likelihood to Recommend
9.0
(32 ratings)
7.0
(47 ratings)
Likelihood to Renew
9.0
(2 ratings)
9.5
(6 ratings)
Usability
8.6
(6 ratings)
9.2
(17 ratings)
Availability
10.0
(1 ratings)
8.0
(1 ratings)
Performance
9.0
(1 ratings)
9.0
(1 ratings)
Support Rating
8.8
(9 ratings)
8.7
(19 ratings)
Online Training
-
(0 ratings)
6.0
(1 ratings)
Implementation Rating
-
(0 ratings)
9.0
(3 ratings)
Product Scalability
10.0
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
User Testimonials
DigitalOceanHeroku Platform
Likelihood to Recommend
DigitalOcean
DigitalOcean is a powerful tool with respect to the services and pricing that it offers. It is easier than other products and also provides servers that are inexpensive with great performance. DigitalOcean also offers additional add-ons such as additional IP addresses, scheduling of backups, etc. One of the best advantages is that it is efficient and is open source. Although, it is suited for a firm that is looking to cut down cost. Also, it is not suited for an organization where the dev/platform/DBA team is less experienced.
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Salesforce
Heroku is very well suited for startups looking to get a server stack up and running quickly. There is little to no overhead when managing your instances. However, you'll need a background in basic DevOps or system management to make sure everything is set up correctly. In addition, it's easy to accidentally go crazy on pricing. Make sure you're only creating the server instances you need to run the base application and set up an auto-scaler plugin to handle peaks.
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Pros
DigitalOcean
  • DigitalOcean provides some of the best cost-to-value services available
  • The DigitalOcean cloud console is very intuitive and easy to navigate
  • DigitalOcean has great support for Docker and other dev ops tools like Terraform.
  • DigitalOcean iterates quickly and provides cutting edge features for organizations that want to keep up with the latest and greatest dev ops tooling
  • DigitalOcean has a great developer community and numerous support docs/tutorials
Read full review
Salesforce
  • Heroku has a very simple deployment model, making it easy to get your application up-and-running with minimal effort. We can focus on our efforts the unique aspects of our application.
  • The robust add-on marketplace makes it easy to try out new approaches with minimal effort and investment -- and when we settle on a solution, we can easily scale it.
  • Heroku's support is quite good -- their staff is quite technical and willing to get into the weeds to diagnose even complicated problems.
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Cons
DigitalOcean
  • Some products/services available on other Cloud providers aren't available, but they seem to be catching up as they add new products like Managed SQL DBs.
  • While they have FreeBSD droplets (VMs), support for *BSD OSs is limited. I.e. the new monitoring agent only works on Linux.
  • There are no regions available on South America.
  • They don't seem to offer enterprise-level products, even basic ones as Windows Server, MS SQL Server, Oracle products, etc.
Read full review
Salesforce
  • Large price jumps between certain resource tiers (2x Dyno for $50 per month versus Performance Dyno for $250). Free Postgres next jumps to $50 per month.
  • Marketing/Branding to non-technical stakeholders. As the years pass, I've had to fight more to convince stakeholders on the value of Heroku over AWS.
  • Improve Buildpack documentation. This is one area where Heroku's documentation is fairly confusing.
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Likelihood to Renew
DigitalOcean
I've been very happy with it for my purposes and I plan to continue to use DigitalOcean for the foreseeable future!
Read full review
Salesforce
Heroku is easy to use, services a ton of functions for you out of the box, and provides a means to get a software product off the ground and managed quickly and easily. The tools provide allows a small to medium size org to move very quickly. The CLI tools provided make managing an entire technical infrastructure simple.
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Usability
DigitalOcean
I honestly can't think of an easier way to set up and maintain your own server. Being able to set up a server in minutes and have fully control is awesome. The UX is incredibly intuitive for first-time users as well so there's no reason to be intimidated when it comes to giving DigitalOcean a shot.
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Salesforce
Easy to use web based console and easy to use command line tools; deployment is done directly from a GIT repository. What more could you ask for? The one thing that keeps me from giving it a 10 is that custom build packs are almost incomprehensible. We used one for a while because we needed cairo graphics processing. Fortunately, I was able to figure out a different way to do what we needed so that we could get off the custom build pack.
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Reliability and Availability
DigitalOcean
Have not found a single second of down time myself. Superior availability.
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Salesforce
Heroku availability correlates pretty strongly to AWS US EAST availability. We had a couple of times where there was a Heroku-specific issue but not for the last 7-8 months.
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Performance
DigitalOcean
Very quick response and high performance, you have to fine tune configurations on your machines though.
Read full review
Salesforce
The only issue that I ever have is that about 1 out of 20 deployments (git push) will hang and need to be cancelled and done again.
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Support Rating
DigitalOcean
They have always been fast, and the process has been straight-forward. I haven't had to use it enough to be frustrated with it, to be honest, and when I have an issue they fix it. As with all support, I wish it felt more human, but they are doing aces.
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Salesforce
I've used it for many years without facing any major problem. It's not hard at all to get used to it, it's documentation is outstanding and simple. We are close to 2020 and I don't think most of the existing companies or startups should still face old problems such as wasting time deploying code and calculate computing resources.
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Implementation Rating
DigitalOcean
No answers on this topic
Salesforce
Be ready to pay a bit more than expected in the beginning if you're migrating from a big server. The application is probably not ready for the change and you have to keep improving it with time.
It's also important to consider that you can't save anything to the disc as it will be lost when your application restarts, so you have to think about using something like S3.
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Alternatives Considered
DigitalOcean
Amazon has a very complex UI and many products to offer. They haven't polished up their UI and it has a much greater learning curve compared to DigitalOcean. However, Amazon Web Services (AWS) does have more comprehensive cloud computing services, which forces some companies to migrate their backend and other services to AWS as they scale up.
Read full review
Salesforce
Heroku is the more expensive option for hosting compared to some of the cloud platforms we investigated, but it's worth it for us because of the plug-and-play nature of Heroku deployment. We can be up and running in a few minutes and know with precision how much it will cost us each month to run the application, unlike Amazon Web Services where you have to go to great pains to configure it correctly or else you might end up with a shocking monthly bill. Overall, spending the time to configure Amazon Web Services or one of its competitors is likely the more affordable and powerful choice, because you have control over so many specifics of the configuration. But it also requires the burden of continuing to maintain and update your AWS instance, whereas with Heroku they take care of security fixes and platform upgrades. It's a great service and we are happy to pay the extra cost for the value-adds Heroku provides.
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Scalability
DigitalOcean
Great scalability, you can start with small plans and move up to premium features at a very good price.
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Salesforce
No answers on this topic
Return on Investment
DigitalOcean
  • With DigitalOcean, I've been able to move all my sites to https using my own implementations of SSL with LetsEncrypt.
  • Since moving my sites to DigitalOcean, my hosting plan costs less than 40% of what I paid for similar hosting from Site5.
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Salesforce
  • It has been critical in seamlessly operating our platform with runs all of our programs.
  • It has been impressive with its ability to scale quickly which results in the growth of our work.
  • It allows for tracking of different features which allows for quick problem solving which saves us time.
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