Just want to say I’ve enjoyed prototyping with Neon recently. It offers almost everything I need in a database setup easily (could do with more regions, Australia please ). With the recent pricing released I can now start to consider using it for production. After some evaluation, the pricing seems to be a bit steep, but please correct me if I’ve misunderstood anything. I’ll mainly be comparing to Supabase, AWS, and Fly.io as they are who I’m currently evaluating Neon against.
Neon compute is between 0.25CU and 7CU where 1CU is 1 vCPU and 4GB RAM. I assume the 0.25CU is equivalent to 1 Shared vCPU and 1GB as specified on the free tier.
Assuming a low but consistent traffic app that has at least 1 query every 5 minutes would have the Neon compute active for the entire month but with the smallest CU available (0.25CU), the pricing would be roughly as follows (excluding other costs):
1 Shared vCPU 1GB RAM (0.25CU)
Neon - $0.0255/hour (US East) → ~$19/month
RDS db.t4g.micro 2 vCPU - $0.016/hour → ~$12/month
Fly - $ 0.00792/hour-> ~$6/month
Supabase free and pro tier includes 2 Core ARM - Free or $25/month
This means that at this sort of regular traffic, in terms of Compute time, Neon is only cost efficient compared to Fly if you have utilisation of less than ~30% for the database each month.
I understand Neon Postgres has some cool features like data branching and offers a lot more than Fly Postgres (Fly is not managed), but even compared to what’s offered by Supabase and AWS RDS, it doesn’t seem that competitive. Yes Supabase and RDS can’t scale to zero, but this only benefits apps that have very infrequent database hits, which is good for hobby apps, but not for production apps which are more likely to be always up.
There is also little information on how Compute Units scale up and down. For all I know it could default unnecessarily to 1 CU in the Pro tier, resulting in much higher than the above estimated costs.
On top of this, while there is a nice Free tier, there are no free allowances in the Pro tier that are typical in other platforms for storage, compute, writes, or data (e.g. Fly provides 130GB free bandwidth, 3GB storage etc). This would help ease in to costs when one needs to transfer from the Free to Pro plan. Or one can simply start off with the Usage based plan, but with confidence they won’t be charged until they reach the free limits, and have their app scale automatically if needed.