Introducing the Scale Fixed Pricing Plan

by on April 18, 2024

Backendless Cloud is introducing a new pricing plan, the Scale Fixed plan, which offers users a more predictable and potentially lower-cost billing option compared to the existing Scale plan. This blog post delves into the details and benefits of this new plan, which will become available right before the Cloud 99 plan is phased out (on May 1st, 2024).

Understanding the Current Scale Plan

The existing Scale plan (which is being renamed to Scale Variable) calculates pricing based on the peak usage within a 24-hour period. If an application experiences a usage spike, this peak determines the billing tier for that day. The monthly bill is the sum of daily charges over a 30-day billing cycle. While this model encourages optimization by making performance a key cost factor, it has presented challenges in predictability and perceived fairness. Specifically, users have expressed concerns about a single spike determining the entire day’s pricing.

Introducing the Scale Fixed Plan

The Scale Fixed plan addresses these concerns by offering a fixed monthly rate, determined by the user selecting a preferred tier based on their expected usage. This plan provides stability in billing, allowing developers to budget more effectively without worrying about unforeseen spikes impacting the billing beyond the times when they occur. The tiers in the Scale Fixed plan are analogous to those in the variable plan, but with the added benefit that any overages – should usage exceed the selected tier – are only billed for the specific hours they occur.

Pricing and Overages

Under the Scale Fixed plan, each tier has a predetermined monthly fee that is generally lower than the cumulative daily rates of the Variable plan. For example, Tier 5 might cost $70 per month on the Fixed plan, compared to $88.50 on the Variable plan.

Scale Fixed Plan monthly tier prices:

Tier Monthly Price Peak Requests Per Minute
1 $15.00 0-5
2 $25.00 6-10
3 $45.00 11-20
4 $55.00 21-50
5 $70.00 51-100
6 $100.00 101-200
7 $165.00 201-300
8 $280.00 301-500
9 $600.00 501-750
10 $1,000.00 751-1000
11 $1,500.00 1001-2000

Overages are priced per hour and are influenced by the tier the overage falls into and the user’s selected tier.

Overage Fee Calculator:

Switching to Scale Fixed in the Console

Backendless is committed to transparency and user empowerment, providing tools that help users monitor and choose the most cost-effective tier for their needs. The Backendless console will include a new Pricing Estimate calculator on the Analytics screen for the Scale Fixed plan, allowing users to analyze past usage under different tiers to see which would have been most economical. This feature aims to assist in making informed decisions about which tier to select.

Analyze the numbers and compare the estimates for both Scale Fixed and Scale Variable plans. Once you determine which plan provides the optimal pricing for your application, you can make the plan selection or changes on the Manage > Billing screen in the Backendless Console:

Preventing Overages with a Pre-set Threshold

One of the notable features of Backendless Cloud’s new pricing plans—both the Scale Variable and the Scale Fixed – is the ability to control spending by setting a maximum tier threshold for allowed overages. This feature is crucial for developers who need to keep their monthly billing predictable while managing their applications’ dynamic needs. In the Backendless Console, users can define a threshold that limits the tier to which their application can scale in response to increased demand. If the application’s usage attempts to exceed this pre-set tier, any additional API requests will automatically be rejected, and the application will send an error response.

Setting such a threshold helps balance the need for performance with budget constraints. Although encountering errors in an application is not ideal, this functionality provides a crucial safety net for avoiding unexpected surges in costs due to temporary spikes in demand. It acts as a buffer, allowing developers to align application performance with financial planning closely. Developers can use this feature strategically by setting a threshold at or above their typical usage tier, providing room for occasional bursts in traffic without the risk of significant overages. This approach ensures that they are not paying for more capacity than they generally need while safeguarding the application’s functionality during unexpected increases in load.

Transition and User Impact

The Scale Fixed plan is now generally available. Applications enrolled in the Cloud 99 plan can switch to the Scale Fixed plan before the Cloud99 plan is phased out. If no action is taken, these applications will automatically transition to the Scale Variable plan on May 2nd, coinciding with the phase-out of the Cloud 99 plan. Users on the existing Scale plan can choose between the new Scale Fixed plan and the rebranded Scale Variable plan, allowing for enhanced control and adaptability in managing their billing preferences.

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