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Google Cloud Functions vs Heroku: What are the differences?

Google Cloud Functions vs Heroku

Google Cloud Functions and Heroku are two popular platforms for deploying and running applications. While both offer similar functionalities, there are several key differences between them.

  1. Scalability and Infrastructure: One major difference between Google Cloud Functions and Heroku is the scalability and underlying infrastructure. Google Cloud Functions is built on a serverless architecture, which means it automatically scales up or down based on demand, allowing for efficient resource utilization. In contrast, Heroku uses a more traditional infrastructure where you need to manually configure and allocate resources.

  2. Pricing and Billing: Another important difference is the pricing and billing model. Google Cloud Functions has a pay-as-you-go pricing model, where you are billed based on the number of invocations and the resources used during the execution. On the other hand, Heroku offers a variety of pricing plans that are based on the number of dynos (containerized application instances) and additional addons.

  3. Supported Languages and Runtimes: Google Cloud Functions supports a wide range of programming languages including Node.js, Python, and Java. It also provides the flexibility to bring your own runtime and environment. Heroku, on the other hand, supports a broader range of languages, including Ruby, PHP, and Go, and provides a more comprehensive set of language-specific buildpacks and addons.

  4. Deployment Options: Google Cloud Functions offers a variety of deployment options, including direct code deployment, integration with Cloud Source Repositories, and deployment through the command-line interface. Heroku also provides multiple deployment options, but it focuses more on Git-based deployments, allowing you to deploy code directly from your Git repo.

  5. Integration and Ecosystem: Google Cloud Functions is tightly integrated with other Google Cloud services, such as Firebase, BigQuery, and Cloud Pub/Sub, providing a seamless experience for developing and integrating distributed systems. Heroku, on the other hand, has its own ecosystem and marketplace of addons, which can be easily integrated into your application for added functionalities.

  6. Managed Services and DevOps: Google Cloud Functions is a fully managed serverless platform, which means that you don't need to worry about infrastructure setup, patching, or scaling. It abstracts away the underlying infrastructure and provides automatic scaling and fault tolerance. Heroku also offers a managed platform, but it provides more control over the infrastructure and configuration, allowing for more advanced DevOps practices.

In summary, Google Cloud Functions and Heroku differ in terms of scalability, pricing, supported languages, deployment options, integration, and underlying infrastructure. The choice between them depends on your specific requirements, application needs, and familiarity with the respective platforms.

Decisions about Google Cloud Functions and Heroku
Clifford Crerar
Software Engineer at Bidvest Advisory Services · | 9 upvotes · 67.5K views

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Pros of Google Cloud Functions
Pros of Heroku
  • 7
    Serverless Applications
  • 5
    Its not AWS
  • 4
    Simplicity
  • 3
    Free Tiers and Trainging
  • 2
    Simple config with GitLab CI/CD
  • 1
    Built-in Webhook trigger
  • 1
    Typescript Support
  • 1
    Blaze, pay as you go
  • 1
    Customer Support
  • 703
    Easy deployment
  • 459
    Free for side projects
  • 374
    Huge time-saver
  • 348
    Simple scaling
  • 261
    Low devops skills required
  • 190
    Easy setup
  • 174
    Add-ons for almost everything
  • 153
    Beginner friendly
  • 150
    Better for startups
  • 133
    Low learning curve
  • 48
    Postgres hosting
  • 41
    Easy to add collaborators
  • 30
    Faster development
  • 24
    Awesome documentation
  • 19
    Simple rollback
  • 19
    Focus on product, not deployment
  • 15
    Natural companion for rails development
  • 15
    Easy integration
  • 12
    Great customer support
  • 8
    GitHub integration
  • 6
    Painless & well documented
  • 6
    No-ops
  • 4
    I love that they make it free to launch a side project
  • 4
    Free
  • 3
    Great UI
  • 3
    Just works
  • 2
    PostgreSQL forking and following
  • 2
    MySQL extension
  • 1
    Security
  • 1
    Able to host stuff good like Discord Bot
  • 0
    Sec

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Cons of Google Cloud Functions
Cons of Heroku
  • 1
    Node.js only
  • 0
    Typescript Support
  • 0
    Blaze, pay as you go
  • 27
    Super expensive
  • 9
    Not a whole lot of flexibility
  • 7
    No usable MySQL option
  • 7
    Storage
  • 5
    Low performance on free tier
  • 2
    24/7 support is $1,000 per month

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What is Google Cloud Functions?

Construct applications from bite-sized business logic billed to the nearest 100 milliseconds, only while your code is running

What is Heroku?

Heroku is a cloud application platform – a new way of building and deploying web apps. Heroku lets app developers spend 100% of their time on their application code, not managing servers, deployment, ongoing operations, or scaling.

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What companies use Google Cloud Functions?
What companies use Heroku?
See which teams inside your own company are using Google Cloud Functions or Heroku.
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What tools integrate with Google Cloud Functions?
What tools integrate with Heroku?

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What are some alternatives to Google Cloud Functions and Heroku?
AWS Lambda
AWS Lambda is a compute service that runs your code in response to events and automatically manages the underlying compute resources for you. You can use AWS Lambda to extend other AWS services with custom logic, or create your own back-end services that operate at AWS scale, performance, and security.
Google App Engine
Google has a reputation for highly reliable, high performance infrastructure. With App Engine you can take advantage of the 10 years of knowledge Google has in running massively scalable, performance driven systems. App Engine applications are easy to build, easy to maintain, and easy to scale as your traffic and data storage needs grow.
Azure Functions
Azure Functions is an event driven, compute-on-demand experience that extends the existing Azure application platform with capabilities to implement code triggered by events occurring in virtually any Azure or 3rd party service as well as on-premises systems.
Firebase
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.
Knative
Knative provides a set of middleware components that are essential to build modern, source-centric, and container-based applications that can run anywhere: on premises, in the cloud, or even in a third-party data center
See all alternatives