AWS Amplify vs Serverless

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AWS Amplify

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AWS Amplify vs Serverless: What are the differences?

Introduction: In this Markdown code, we will compare the key differences between AWS Amplify and Serverless.

  1. Deployment and Management: AWS Amplify is a full-stack app development platform that offers a set of tools and services for building scalable applications, while Serverless is a cloud computing execution model where the cloud provider manages the infrastructure. With Amplify, developers can easily deploy and manage their applications using the Amplify CLI, whereas Serverless requires the use of frameworks like Serverless Framework or AWS SAM for deployment and management.

  2. Backend Services Integration: AWS Amplify provides built-in support for integrating with AWS services like Lambda, API Gateway, DynamoDB, and Cognito, making it easier for developers to build serverless applications with these services. On the other hand, Serverless offers flexibility to integrate with a wider range of backend services and not limited to AWS services, allowing developers to choose services based on their requirements.

  3. Customization and Extensibility: AWS Amplify is designed to provide a streamlined development experience with pre-configured settings and limitations on customization, making it easier for beginners or developers looking for rapid development. Serverless, on the other hand, allows for more customization and extensibility with the ability to write custom plugins, use any programming language, and deploy to multiple cloud providers, making it suitable for complex applications and advanced users.

  4. Pricing Model: AWS Amplify follows a pay-as-you-go pricing model with no upfront costs and charges based on usage of the underlying services like Lambda, API Gateway, and storage. Whereas Serverless also follows a pay-as-you-go model but is more cost-effective for applications with sporadic usage patterns or low traffic as it only charges for the resources consumed during execution.

  5. Community and Ecosystem: AWS Amplify has a strong community and ecosystem with official documentation, tutorials, and support from AWS, making it easier for developers to get started and find resources for troubleshooting or learning. Serverless also has a thriving community with plugins, integrations, and community-driven resources, but it may require more effort to navigate and find the right resources compared to AWS Amplify.

In Summary, AWS Amplify offers a more streamlined development experience with tight integration with AWS services, whereas Serverless provides more customization options, flexibility in backend service integration, and broader community support.

Decisions about AWS Amplify and Serverless

When adding a new feature to Checkly rearchitecting some older piece, I tend to pick Heroku for rolling it out. But not always, because sometimes I pick AWS Lambda . The short story:

  • Developer Experience trumps everything.
  • AWS Lambda is cheap. Up to a limit though. This impact not only your wallet.
  • If you need geographic spread, AWS is lonely at the top.
The setup

Recently, I was doing a brainstorm at a startup here in Berlin on the future of their infrastructure. They were ready to move on from their initial, almost 100% Ec2 + Chef based setup. Everything was on the table. But we crossed out a lot quite quickly:

  • Pure, uncut, self hosted Kubernetes — way too much complexity
  • Managed Kubernetes in various flavors — still too much complexity
  • Zeit — Maybe, but no Docker support
  • Elastic Beanstalk — Maybe, bit old but does the job
  • Heroku
  • Lambda

It became clear a mix of PaaS and FaaS was the way to go. What a surprise! That is exactly what I use for Checkly! But when do you pick which model?

I chopped that question up into the following categories:

  • Developer Experience / DX 🤓
  • Ops Experience / OX 🐂 (?)
  • Cost 💵
  • Lock in 🔐

Read the full post linked below for all details

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Pros of AWS Amplify
Pros of Serverless
  • 5
  • 3
    Better with Relations and Security
  • 2
  • 2
    Flexible Auth options
  • 1
    Continuous deployment
  • 1
    Backed by Amazon
  • 0
  • 14
    API integration
  • 7
    Supports cloud functions for Google, Azure, and IBM
  • 3
    Lower cost
  • 1
    Auto scale
  • 1

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Cons of AWS Amplify
Cons of Serverless
  • 2
    Free tier is limited
  • 1
    Steep Learning Curve
    Be the first to leave a con

    Sign up to add or upvote consMake informed product decisions

    - No public GitHub repository available -

    What is AWS Amplify?

    A JavaScript library for frontend and mobile developers building cloud-enabled applications. The library is a declarative interface across different categories of operations in order to make common tasks easier to add into your application. The default implementation works with Amazon Web Services (AWS) resources but is designed to be open and pluggable for usage with other cloud services that wish to provide an implementation or custom backends.

    What is Serverless?

    Build applications comprised of microservices that run in response to events, auto-scale for you, and only charge you when they run. This lowers the total cost of maintaining your apps, enabling you to build more logic, faster. The Framework uses new event-driven compute services, like AWS Lambda, Google CloudFunctions, and more.

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    What companies use AWS Amplify?
    What companies use Serverless?
    See which teams inside your own company are using AWS Amplify or Serverless.
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    What tools integrate with AWS Amplify?
    What tools integrate with Serverless?

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    What are some alternatives to AWS Amplify and Serverless?
    Firebase is a cloud service designed to power real-time, collaborative applications. Simply add the Firebase library to your application to gain access to a shared data structure; any changes you make to that data are automatically synchronized with the Firebase cloud and with other clients within milliseconds.
    AWS Mobile Hub
    AWS Mobile Hub is the fastest way to build mobile apps powered by AWS. It lets you easily add and configure features for your apps, including user authentication, data storage, backend logic, push notifications, content delivery, and analytics. After you build your app, AWS Mobile Hub gives you easy access to testing on real devices, as well as analytics dashboards to track usage of your app – all from a single, integrated console.
    A single process to commit code, review with the team, and deploy the final result to your customers.
    The Realm Mobile Platform is a next-generation data layer for applications. Realm is reactive, concurrent, and lightweight, allowing you to work with live, native objects.
    AWS AppSync
    AWS AppSync automatically updates the data in web and mobile applications in real time, and updates data for offline users as soon as they reconnect. AppSync makes it easy to build collaborative mobile and web applications that deliver responsive, collaborative user experiences.
    See all alternatives