so someone posted this
Firebase Costs Increased by 7,000%!
Due to a change in how they report data usage, our monthly costs for Firebase, a SaaS provided by Google, has increased from $25 a month to what is now moving towards the $2,000 mark — with no changes to our actual data use. This change was made without warning to any users.
This article is not meant as derogatory. It is my hope that by outlining the path to our debilitating mistake that others may be able to prepare themselves and not follow in our footsteps.
and also some interesting comments on Hacker News
Here few comments:
- Even if you are building a mobile and/or desktop app (opposed to a web app)
I can guarantee you will need server-side stuff either for hosting files, providing services, etc.
- First problem comes with people ignoring the server need, so instead of learning or hiring a sysadmin
they go with solution like Heroku, AWS, and other Clouds solutions ...
- Second problem comes with people thinking they can use/reuse third party services
and "get away with it" as "it gonna stay cheap/free" ...
Results, you end up in a gigantesque trap, not only a service trap.
Not only it can kill your app but it can also kill your business altogether.
I get it, "oh let's use Firebase because it avoid us implementing it ourselves",
or the "let's delegate the whole server hosting part to AWS because it takes too long to do it ourselves", etc.
But all these things have limits, the problem is to ignore them, or more exactly ignore "what we would need to do ourselves to replace these 3rd party thing".
Let's say you mainly use something like Firebase to store your users JSON data,
so what happen if you can not use Firebase anymore ?
The way I would do it is what I call "old school"
install/deploy/maintain a dedicated server
take few weeks max to setup, cost about 30 to $100/month on OVH
also need to cover the backup/restore part of the data
host/develop a REST API
take few weeks, maybe even few months (depend on the complexity of stuff)
make it scale
clone the same server setup on multiple servers
sync the DB storing the data on those different servers
All that is what I call classic sysadmin work.
Yeah all that require work and most of the time a lot of work, but it seems nobody wants to do this kind of work anymore and they all prefer to pay (rent) a service instead ... except when you are doing that you can not control your costs anymore.
And you can resume it like that
Build apps fast, without managing infrastructure
Firebase products like Analytics, Realtime Database, Cloud Messaging, and Crash let you move quickly and focus on your users.
OK that's fine, but I would argue that being in control of your own infrastructure is the most important part of your app, otherwise you gonna pay those 3rd parties services a bunch of money to do it for you.
It's fast now and no control on costs vs slower to get there but full control of your costs.