Why do people use Heroku when AWS is present What distinguishes Heroku from AWS

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I'm a beginner RoR programmer who's planning to deploy my app using Heroku. Word from my other advisor friends says that Heroku is really easy, good to use. The only problem is that I still have no idea what Heroku does...

I've looked at their website and in a nutshell, what Heroku does is help with scaling but... why does that even matter? How does Heroku help with:

  1. Speed - My research implied that deploying AWS on the US East Coast would be the fastest if I am targeting a US/Asia-based audience.

  2. Security - How secure are they?

  3. Scaling - How does it actually work?

  4. Cost efficiency - There's something like a dyno that makes it easy to scale.

  5. How do they fare against their competitors? For example, Engine Yard and bluebox?

Please use layman English terms to explain... I'm a beginner programmer.

Sep 17, 2018 in AWS by bug_seeker
• 15,520 points

1 answer to this question.

0 votes

AWS / Heroku are both free for small hobby projects (to start with).

If you want to start an app right away, without much customization of the architecture, then choose Heroku.

If you want to focus on the architecture and to be able to use different web servers, then choose AWS. AWS is more time-consuming based on what service/product you choose, but can be worth it. AWS also comes with many plugin services and products.


  • Platform as a Service (PAAS)
  • Good documentation
  • Has built-in tools and architecture.
  • Limited control over architecture while designing app.
  • Deployment is taken care of (through git commands only).
  • Not time consuming.


  • Infrastructure as a Service (IAAS)
  • Versatile - has many products such as EC2, LAMBDA, EMR, etc.
  • Can use a Dedicated instance for more control over the architecture, such as choosing the OS, software version, etc. There's more than one backend layers.
  • Elastic Beanstalk is a feature similar to Heroku's PAAS.
  • Can use the automated deployment, or roll your own.
answered Sep 17, 2018 by Priyaj
• 58,090 points

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