11 min read
Eyal Katz

Top 10 Heroku Alternatives

Heroku is a features-packed PaaS solution. Discover more about Heroku and other alternatives to help make cloud hosting a breeze for small projects, individual developers, and early-stage startups.

Top 10 Heroku Alternatives

Heroku is Platform as a Service (PaaS) royalty. It enabled the deployment of over 13 million apps since its inception in 2007, and its user-friendly platform for running and scaling applications is loved by developers worldwide. However, the tables turned when it announced the end of its free tier plan in early 2022. 

With a market value of almost $70 billion as of 2022, the PaaS segment is packed with innovative tools to make all deployment dreams come true. So, thankfully for Heroku users, there are plenty more fish in the sea. The question is: what’s the best catch? This article takes you through what you need to account for before choosing a PaaS solution and details the top 10 Heroku alternatives for 2023. 

Heroku: The Before and After

Heroku, owned by Salesforce, is a features-packed PaaS solution that makes cloud hosting a breeze for small projects, individual developers, and early-stage startups. It seamlessly integrates with popular programming languages such as Java, Ruby, Node.js, Python, and Go. It requires minimal infrastructure knowledge, making it ideal for teams seeking a flexible and straightforward hosting solution. The ease of deployment is also a key component in automating DevOps in your organization. 

Last year, Heroku made headlines as it announced it would phase out its free tiers across Heroku Dynos, Heroku Postgres, and Heroku Data – which many developers and small teams relied on for experimental applications. The tool still provides all the features it got popular for – and then some – only now it serves users across a range of paid plans


Choosing a Heroku Alternative: what to Account for

Instant deployments

Look for a platform allowing instant cloud deployment, so your developers can quickly push their code and deploy apps without friction. Control Plane provides a platform-agnostic way to deploy applications, allowing the developers to run code on any cloud and speed up deployment. 

Reliability and low latency

Prioritize platforms with high application availability and low latency to ensure a consistently excellent user experience with minimal delays. Control Plane offers “five-nines” availability –  meaning that your apps are available and functioning well 99.999% of the time – by connecting your users to their nearest healthy cluster. 


Select a platform that automatically scales based on traffic patterns, which enables more efficient resource allocation and cost-saving opportunities. Plus, the platform should support various application types and handle increasing workloads and traffic without compromising speed. 

Multi-cloud and multi-region support

Choose a platform that supports a multi-cloud architecture and is available in any region to enhance application performance and comply with data sovereignty requirements. 

Cost control

Costs can quickly escalate in the cloud, and the last thing you need is to lose control of how much you’re paying. Consider platforms with transparent and predictable pricing based on actual usage. Control Plane’s Capacity AI technology enables you to save over 70% of cloud computing costs by charging for actual resource usage, which is billed by millicores and megabytes of memory. 

Security and Compliance

Choose a platform with built-in security measures and compliance with industry standards to make it easier to manage vulnerabilities, find security gaps, and implement a robust Cloud Identity Management strategy. For instance, Cloud Plane offers a tamper-proof audit trail that makes monitoring your app and finding security gaps easier. 

Top 10 Heroku Alternatives

1. Control Plane

Control Plane is a dynamic platform that facilitates deploying, managing, and running backend applications like microservices across multiple clouds or on-premises. Standout features include “Capacity AI” for paying only for actual computing use, serverless operation, automatic scaling, and significant cloud cost reduction due to the possibility of cloud repatriation and only paying for the cloud computing you use. 

Its Universal Cloud Identity™ technology allows seamless service leveraging from AWS, GCP, and Azure, regardless of the running environment. You can deploy applications quickly and confidently and have complete flexibility and control over what resources you use, as well as where you run your code. 

Best for companies looking for flexibility and greater cloud control. 

Customer review

“I could almost hire another engineer for what Heroku was going to charge us to upgrade, and I thought I could get a lot more done by finding a different solution that got us to the same goals without the added expense.”

2. Red Hat OpenShift

Red Hat OpenShift is a container application development platform that works both as a self-managed or fully managed solution. It enables dev teams to get to production faster and run their code on the public cloud, hybrid cloud, on-premises, or on-edge architecture. It also leverages technologies such as AI and ML to accelerate development.  

Best for large enterprises with complex systems. 

Customer review:

“From a developer’s perspective, OpenShift’s interface is highly intuitive. It simplifies application creation, deployment, and updates, which can be accomplished with just a few clicks or commands. The platform supports a myriad of languages, libraries, and services, offering developers immense flexibility.”

3. Dokku

Dokku simplifies application development and scaling. It runs Heroku-compatible applications using Docker and Git, and users can extend it with custom plugins that can also be shared online. Plus, you can install Dokku in any cloud or hardware. 

Best for smaller projects, startups, and those seeking customization without vendor lock-in.

Customer review

“It’s so easy! When Heroku killed their free tier, I needed a replacement. This solved my problem for simple apps while I worked on them. You just git push, and the application is live online.”

4. VMware Cloud Foundry

VMware Tanzu simplifies cloud-native application development with container provisioning, security monitoring, and observability features. It prioritizes security by integrating it throughout the development and delivery process. Self-service provisioning, app templates, and reusable patterns are also included.

Best for businesses modernizing apps, streamlining developer experiences across Kubernetes distributions, and adopting DevSecOps. 

Customer review

“I have been working with VMware products for 3-4 years. What they provide surely helps organizations to run their Infrastructure smoothly. VMware Tanzu is one of the products that help your app virtualization technology work smoothly. It helps you deploy Apps with CI CD pipelines and can easily monitor microservices.”

5. Google Cloud App Engine

Google Cloud App Engine is a managed serverless web application development and hosting platform. It supports multiple programming languages and handles server management and deployment configurations. It also offers robust diagnostic tools, security measures, and a built-in firewall.

Best for developers and businesses seeking server-side rendered websites without the hassle of server management. 

Customer review

“Google Cloud extends the offering of Google Workspaces and other SaaS services most commonly used by small businesses. Almost everyone has a Gmail account, and getting onboard with Google Cloud is very simple.”

6. AWS Elastic Beanstalk

AWS Elastic Beanstalk simplifies the deployment and scaling of AWS web applications and services. Once you upload your code, this tool will deploy it for you and manage its infrastructure. It automates the entire deployment process, including capacity provisioning, load balancing, auto-scaling, and health monitoring. Plus, users have control over AWS resources for their applications.

Best for creating mobile API backends and transitioning from legacy infrastructure.

Customer review

“AWS Elastic Beanstalk is a user-friendly platform that simplifies the complexities of capacity provisioning, load balancing, auto-scaling, and application health monitoring. Taking care of these infrastructure tasks allows me to concentrate on the business aspects, saving valuable time and effort. “

7. Microsoft Azure App Service

Microsoft Azure App Service enables developers to build, deploy, and scale web and mobile applications using various languages, tools, and platforms. You can explore some of its functionalities for free in the first 12 months, such as Azure SQL Database and Azure Virtual Machines for Linux. It offers a managed environment, automatic scaling, continuous deployment, and high availability.

Best for those seeking diverse development tools and languages and a relational database-as-a-service for data-intensive apps.

Customer review

“Microsoft Azure has been the best cloud option for virtual machines we have used. We can quickly set up and resolve virtual machines. The support has been amazing to work with, and we would recommend it to any company looking for a secure and reliable VDI setup.”

8. Netlify

Netlify eliminates complex setup and DevOps tasks by providing a global environment and supporting modern web frameworks. Integrated tools like automated Git push deployment and global edge location hosting streamline the development workflow.

Best for teams prioritizing fast deployment and improved collaboration, especially when building applications with modern web frameworks.

Customer review

“Netlify is easy to set up and good for static websites with small to medium user bases. It has many plugins you can inject into your website to get faster performance analytics etc.”

9. DigitalOcean

DigitalOcean offers scalable computing platforms with virtual machines, managed databases, scalable storage, and networking. It simplifies application deployment, scaling, and management with Kubernetes and containers. Additional features include VPC networking, collaboration tools, one-click apps, robust APIs, and monitoring capabilities.

Best for those seeking a user-friendly cloud platform for application deployment, management, and scaling. 

Customer review

“Digital Ocean is the best cloud service provider. They provide services like Storage, Database, and Computing (Droplets). The best thing I like about digital ocean is that they give free credits for 60 days, which helps a person to try their platform. They have one of the best & most up-to-date documentations.”

10. IBM Cloud

IBM Cloud offers a comprehensive cloud platform with 170+ products and services. It supports hybrid cloud solutions, providing secure workload distribution and management options. It has pre-configured security controls and solutions like AI, analytics, and containers offering extensive control and customization and catering to various industries. 

Best for businesses in regulated industries. 

Customer review

“It provides scalability and elasticity for resources as per demand. It also offers a wide range of global networks, allowing to create and use resources in different geographical locations.”

More fish in the PaaS sea 

The change in Heroku’s policies can catalyze dev teams to explore new horizons and reconsider their needs. With PaaS solutions continuously improving, select one that covers not just your current needs but your long-term goals – one with future-proof flexibility in mind that evolves alongside your cloud architecture. 

Control Plane offers everything you need to manage and scale your cloud infrastructure (or even migrate to the cloud if you haven’t yet taken the leap) without developer overhead: extremely low latency, 99.999% availability, complete control over where you run your code, and the possibility to mix and match resources from different cloud providers. Sign up for free here.