DigitalOcean vs AWS: Which Cloud Server is Better in 2022

Cloud computing is the remote delivery of IT services over the Internet, such as computing, storage, database, software, security, networking, and analytics. Cloud computing offers more flexibility, scalability, and security over on-premises infrastructure. There are many popular cloud providers in the market, and two of them are – AWS and DigitalOcean. 

DigitalOcean mainly focuses on developers and the other AWS being the market leader in the cloud computing field, offers services in most of the domains, from simple storage services to Machine learning, quantum computing, and robotics.

Now the question is which cloud platform to choose, AWS or DigitalOcean? In this article, we will learn more about both cloud platforms and see the significant differences between them.

What is DigitalOcean?

DigitalOcean was initially used to manufacture wireless devices. In 2011, they entered the cloud computing field. They focus on providing developers with a simple and rapid approach to building low-cost Linux machines known as droplets. It is simple to install several apps on droplets. DigitalOcean supports most Linux distributions, including Debian, CentOS, and Ubuntu.

DigitalOcean has one of the cheapest price models among all the cloud service providers that begins at $0.007/hour or $5/month, with a simple transition between hourly and monthly rates.

Droplets are the most popular offering of DigitalOcean, which comes at $10/month or $0.015/hour that includes a single-core CPU, 30GB SSD, 1GB memory, and 2TB transfer. AWS’s t2.small bundle is double Droplet’s price. 

DigitalOcean is popular because of its high-performance servers, which offer a network speed of 1Gbps. Also, as in DigitalOcean, all the hard drives are SSD; it provides a start-up time of around just 55 seconds.

DigitalOcean has designed good documentation to help you get started, but they do not offer telephone support if you face any problems. Although, they do have email support which sometimes can be lengthy. 

DigitalOcean emerged as a significant competitor in the cloud computing market from the early days because of its high performance and low pricing model. 

Advantages of DigitalOcean

Affordable pricing

DigitalOcean’s base plan is $5 per month, and they provide hourly and monthly payment alternatives, making their platform incredibly accessible to small businesses and individual software developers. Despite the cost-effectiveness, it assures excellent performance and security.

User-friendly documentation

The official documentation of DigitalOcean is user-friendly and is the best approach to learning about new features and services. DigitalOcean’s documentation is extensive, detailed, and immensely useful. Tutorials, installation manuals, and how-to guides are all included in the documentation, so even if you are new to the platform, it will be easy for you to get started. 

No-fuss UI

Its user interface is attractive, effective, and free of unnecessary features that might confuse novice users. Developers and small businesses highly praise its one-click apps because they enable automation and interaction with third-party solutions. Furthermore, for your convenience, it provides simple and basic APIs.

What is AWS?

Amazon Web Service or AWS is the market leader in the cloud computing field. It provides PaaS and IaaS services in different domains from storage, computing, artificial intelligence, machine learning, database, security, networking, etc. In terms of features and services, it is clear that any cloud, including DigitalOcean, cannot compete with AWS. AWS offers way more benefits and services than any other cloud provider. 

AWS offers low-cost services with no up-front costs and a pay-as-you-go model. It’s simple to use and highly secure. In addition, Amazon has one of the sharpest documentation. AWS offers around 200 services, and they have substantial documentation around all of their offerings. In addition, they have outstanding support if you face issues. 

Advantages of AWS

Simple to use

AWS is intended to enable users securely and swiftly host their apps and website. You can signup from the AWS website, and they have a user-friendly management console and documentation to help you get started. 


AWS is flexible with any operating system, database, programming language, or application platform. It offers services in most technical domains. This simplifies the migration of existing applications while keeping alternatives for developing new solutions.


If you have a high surge in traffic. With AWS, you can scale up your application in a few clicks and minutes. And if there is a temporary slowdown in traffic, you can scale down the servers to save on running costs.

Big project friendly

The first year of utilizing AWS products is completely free. Some items are always free. The paid AWS products are among the most affordable. There are no subscriptions, additional costs, and termination fees. 

DigitalOcean vs AWS: Main Difference

The main difference between DigialOcean and AWS is that DigitalOcean gives start-ups affordable Linux instances called droplets whereas AWS is really an umbrella offering consisting of a puzzling array of various branded IaaS and PaaS solutions that includes 170+ services.

DigitalOcean vs AWS: Available Service

DigitalOcean sells affordable computing droplets. Because AWS has everything for everyone, it offers various services and products across several categories. As a result, you may choose from multiple services ranging from simple storage to highly advanced Machine learning and quantum computing.

To sum up, AWS has 170+ services and products in different domains. At the same time, DigitalOcean’s main product is Droplets, which developers use to deploy apps. 

Some of the significant DigitalOcean offerings are:

  • Droplets: cloud computing service
  • DigitalOcean Kubernetes: simple and managed Kubernetes offering
  • Volume Block Storage: Droplets SSD block storage
  • Networking: DNS, Firewalls, and Floating IPs

Some of the significant AWS offerings are; 

  • AWS EC2: computing service.
  • Amazon s3: object storage service.
  • AWS Lambda: used to run serverless apps.
  • Glacier: low-cost storage service for petabytes of data.
  • Amazon SNS: offers pub/sub notifications for mobile users.
  • Amazon VPC: virtual private cloud service to provide a logically isolated cloud environment to users.
  • DynamoDB: fully managed NoSQL database.

DigitalOcean vs AWS: Scalability

AWS services are simple to scale, thanks to various complementary technologies that enable your website to manage large volumes of traffic and serve a worldwide audience. While DigitalOcean is designed to be simple, it is also highly scalable, allowing your team to create an ideal solution for your app.

For example, the API and CLI tools from DigitalOcean will enable you to dynamically add Droplets to handle significant volume traffic to your app. In addition, the DigitalOcean “Resize” function allows you to increase the computing power of your Droplets. Still, to truly grow your application, you’ll need to add nodes, which you can accomplish using the DigitalOcean API.

DigitalOcean vs AWS: Pricing

In terms of price structure, DigitalOcean is a clear winner. They’ve made pricing easier by grouping everything. They have a monthly price of $5 for a primary droplet. It is the most excellent option for startups because there is no complicated calculator to predict your use.

You have the option of paying hourly or monthly. Hourly billing is applied to all droplets. AWS also has a reasonable pricing structure. You pay for what you use. It offers a free account, and some services are entirely free. A 1 GB RAM DigitalOcean Droplet with a 25 GB SSD disk storage, for example, will cost $5 per month.

This works out to $0.007 per hour, which is much less than the similar AWS EC2 t2.micro instance, costing $0.0116 per hour on a pay-as-you-go basis.

DigitalOcean vs AWS: Customer Support

DigitalOcean provides free technical help around the clock. You may receive assistance from the company’s support personnel at any time. If you spend $500 per month, you can have Business Support, including access to Customer Success Managers and additional DigitalOcean support. It also provides Premium support.

This level of assistance is available for a monthly cost to enterprises who want high-touch help with solution engineers to optimize services and guarantee a 30-minute response time. AWS customers are also entitled to free Basic Support, with the opportunity to upgrade to a premium support plan.

Developer, Business, and Enterprise level paid support plans are available. Developer support costs $29 per month or 3% of AWS charges, with a minimum response time of 12 hours. Business support costs $100, or 10% of AWS monthly charges, including a one-hour response time for system outages.

For business-critical system outages, enterprise support includes a 15-minute reaction time. This level of assistance costs $15,000, or around 10% of the monthly AWS fee.

DigitalOcean vs AWS: Complete Comparison Overview

DigitalOcean AWS
Owner DigitalOcean Amazon
Compatibility With Windows OS DigitalOcean is not compatible with Windows OS AWS is compatible with any OS
Key Features Easy Management, Reliable, and Auto-Scaling Simple dashboard, Easy Configuration, etc.
Advanced Operations DigitalOcean is IaaS(Infrastructure as a Service). You have to manage everything AWS is PaaS(Platform as a Service).  It controls everything on its own except applications.
Mobile-Friendly UI Yes No
Pricing Pricing starts from $5 per month Pricing starts from $14 per month
Accepted forms of Payment Credit cards and Paypal. Only Credit Card
Company using the Cloud Server HP, Flipkart, Redhat, Reddit, Airbnb, etc. SAP, SONY, Netflix, Pfizer etc.

Wrapping up

The DigitalOcean is aimed at a niche of developers who want a low-cost, high-performance instance. On the other hand, Amazon has a large service bucket, and it has an everyone approach.

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