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Summary:

The cloud price wars continue as ProfitBricks chops prices on CPU cores and RAM by 50 percent and claims more flexible options than even Amazon Web Services.

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Last week it was CloudSigma, this week ProfitBricks put its cloud pricing on the chopping block, saying its sliced some pricing by up to 50 percent.

ProfitBricks, a German-based company with U.S. headquarters in Boston, pitches its view of scale-up  cloud instances, paired with fast Infiniband connectivity, as an attractive alternative to Amazon Web Services.  A detailed way to  parse the new price model is here with ProfitBricks offering comparisons to both AWS and Rackspace pricing. In general, Pete Johnson, an HP veteran who is now  cloud evangelist for ProfitBricks, says the company offers more configuration options than Amazon that better fit many use cases.

You need to be a Ph.D. with a spreadsheet to assess cloud pricing between providers, but comparing ProfitBricks new pricing to its existing model, the company cut price on CPU cores by 50 percent, on RAM by 50 percent and dropped all charges on in-bound networking, Johnson said.

The company also claims that customers can save “at least 45 percent”  compared to an Amazon M1 instance which — at  one CPU  core, 3.75GB of RAM and 250GB of block storage will cost $0.155 per hour or $111.40 per month. The comparable ProfitBricks instance costs $0.0856 per our or $61.65 per month, according to ProfitBricks. But, as always, check out the comparisons on your own  – there are many variables in Amazon pricing.

Price is a moving target in cloud land. Amazon is famous for adding services and cutting prices dozens of times per year. So I guess, it’s now Amazon’s turn again.

  1. Please be aware that ProfitBricks is making the comparison vs. AWS On-Demand pricing. Both RI and Spot offer significant savings — the same comparison using the most efficient 3 year RI brings AWS cost right down to $62/month. Spot would likely be even cheaper.

    As you note, there are a myriad combination of purchasing choices. However, CloudCheckr Pro’s purchasing recommendations helps users sort through them and make the best choice.

    Finally – users need to really think beyond cost. Equal cost does not mean equal services. ProfitBricks may catch-up, but right now AWS is miles ahead in terms of offerings and choices.

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    1. Hi aaron,

      You are correct, the comparison we are making is for On Demand pricing and I’m glad you brought up Reserved Instances and Spot Instances. As I wrote about this on our blog today (http://blog.profitbricks.com/half-the-price-twice-the-speed-price-performance-leader/) taking advantage of Reserved Instance pricing requires predicting demand, which defeats the purpose of using public cloud in the first place. Andy Jassy himself correctly asserts that prediction is difficult and that the power of public cloud comes in the ability to react to demand with elastic capacity as quickly as possible. As I cite in my blog article, Cloudability has solid data that only 20% of their customers utilize Reserved Instances and I think that’s because if you can indeed predict your demand there are better alternatives.

      As it relates to Spot Instances, given their very nature there are only specific types of workloads that are usable with them. Very few use cases can tolerate being shut off without warning.

      Finally, I couldn’t agree more that users need to think beyond cost and for ProfitBricks that means greater flexibility, ease of use, and performance. On that last one, I’d invite you to take a look at our latest performance report (http://info.profitbricks.com/Cloud-Computing-Performance-Comparison.html), which shows ProfitBricks is at least twice as fast as AWS.

      —Pete
      Pete Johnson
      Cloud Platform Evangelist
      ProfitBricks

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  2. This article is definitely misleading, and comments on a perceived “challenge” with using AWS reserved instances because of the need for predictability are not issues for small or medium companies who actually plan their deployments rather than just start throwing instances up in some cloud.

    There’s always a need for cheap hosting, we use cheap throw-away VPS for our dev/test solutions, and AWS for production, minimizes cost and maximizes value.

    The big value prop our company gets out of AWS is a global footprint, among the IaaS vendors, they are the only reliable one who can provide seamless solutions in Europe, Latin America, North America, and Asia.

    Net/net, I’m excited to see more vendors compete on price to drive down the cost for the simple instance pricing, but without the other collection of rich services for storage, messaging, payment, virtual networking, etc, other clouds just can’t match the breadth of AWS services today.

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