APM pricing is now affordable for all developers, and why they should care

Matt Watson Insights for Dev Managers Leave a Comment

APM Pricing has been historically out of control…

One of the reasons I founded Stackify was because my developers didn’t have the tools they needed. The tools were designed for IT operations, the data my team needed was spread across too many different tools, and the pricing was very expensive.

Sadly, several years later, not much has changed in the industry. APM pricing is out of reach for most developers… until now!

APM is very valuable for all developer teams

APM (application performance management) tools can collect an amazing amount of data that is valuable developers, QA, IT operations, and others. I would argue that if your application matters to you and your customers, APM is a must have for a lot of reasons.

APM can help you do several key things:

  • Measure and monitor application performance
  • Quickly identify root cause for application problems
  • Identify ways to optimize application performance

The problem is, APM solutions are still so expensive that most development teams can’t afford them.

APM shouldn’t be a luxury item only available to large enterprises. 

Every developer needs to understand the performance of their app, all the way down to the code level. They need access to transaction traces, metrics, errors, and logs.

The top APM vendors are still extremely expensive

I was recently working on a post to list all of the APM tools available. As part of that I looked up the pricing of all of the tools to have as a reference point for our readers.

Gartner would tell you that AppDynamics, New Relic, & Dynatrace are the market leaders.

Like most people, I was shocked by how expensive they are.

APM Pricing Example #1

Dynatrace pricing: $216 per month

“Starting arrangement of Dynatrace Application Monitoring is expensive. Among authorities, indexers, and databases, we have around 8 servers for every site devoted to Dynatrace, which is too high a number.” – via G2Crowd Review

APM Pricing Example #2

AppDynamics pricing: $300 per month

“As it provides many advanced features, it is providing solutions on a very high rate, it is very expensive for small organizations. When a user starts integrating its product units, costs increase to very high price.” – via G2Crowd Review

APM Pricing Example #3

New Relic APM pricing: Up to $600 per month? $375 for a dual core cloud server on GCE

“There are several other options that are in a much lower price bracket that cover the 80% case for most people.” – via G2Crowd Review

New Relic seems to pushing everyone to annual pricing or you pay exorbitant pricing for a month to month commitment. New Relic pricing is current 3x higher if you don’t do an annual contract. By the way, Compare New Relic vs Retrace.

Compared to Retrace

Retrace APM pricing: $25 for single core servers, $50 for multiple cores. $10 for pre-production. Includes full code level performance, metrics, errors, logs, and monitoring features.

Retrace is very affordable for any size company or team.

An APM tool shouldn’t cost more than your server

All 3 examples above show pricing that is $200+ a month per server for application performance management and monitoring. Appallingly, this is more expensive that most server hosting options these days.

A basic dual core Linux server on Google Compute Engine is only $51 a month.

All of these APM tools cost more than 4x as much.

Even large enterprise customers are cutting APM corners due to high APM pricing

We talk to companies every day who currently use one of these vendors or others. Of course, none of them are happy about the price. They are looking for other solutions.

Many of them partially remedy the solution by only installing APM on some of their servers and some of their apps.

Installing an APM solution on only a small % of servers helps get a little bit of insight to the performance of your applications.

However, it is hard to ensure that every one of your customers is happy if you aren’t tracking every transaction. You could falsely think everything is working perfectly because your only seeing part of the story.

Would your marketing team be happy if Google Analytics only randomly tracked part of your website traffic? Of course not.

Why is APM pricing traditionally so high?

There is only one reason I can think of to charge such high prices… Their business models are based on selling big contracts worth hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars to large enterprises. That requires expensive salespeople, sales engineers, and all the overhead that goes with it.

But what about smaller companies? There are millions of small development teams or individual developers that need an APM solution like Retrace.

Traditional APM doesn’t even include key developer features, which cost even more…

Traditional APM solutions were not designed for developers. They were designed for IT operations and measuring quality of service of critical applications.

Many APM solutions lack key features like robust error tracking, application metrics, and especially correlation of application logging. Logs are critical to help developers track down application problems. Correlating them to individual web requests or transactions, like Retrace does, is essential for developers.

Traditional APM is expensive enough. Having to also pay for a separate log management, error tracking, and/or other solutions only adds to the craziness.

Why is Retrace affordable?

At Stackify we have built a fantastic APM solution of our own, Retrace. We understand what it takes to develop and host it. We collect and store a ton of data. Performance summaries, code level transaction traces, errors, logs, metrics, etc. It is definitely a lot of data, but it doesn’t justify prices being so high.

Our business model was designed to ensure we could delivery a high quality product at affordable APM pricing. We want to help every development team in the world optimize and monitor the performance of their applications.

Retrace APM is powerful, proven, and affordable

Our focus has always been on developers. We even decided to make Prefix, an awesome lightweight profiler specifically designed for developers, and give it away for free!

We have thousands of companies in over 120 countries that use our Prefix & Retrace products.

As a pricing comparison, Retrace starts at just $10 per month, including ALL features, for non production servers. Production servers are $25 for single core or $50 for multi core servers.

 


You’ve read about it, now try it for 14-days. Your team will praise your name!





Get Started with Retrace 




About Matt Watson

Matt is the Founder & CEO of Stackify. He has been a developer/hacker for over 15 years and loves solving hard problems with code. While working in IT management he realized how much of his time was wasted trying to put out production fires without the right tools. He founded Stackify in 2012 to create an easy to use set of tools for developers.