Table Of Contents
VMware CloudHealth What About Building Your Own Alternative to CloudHealth?  Apptio Cloudability   AWS Cost Explorer CloudCheckr ProsperOps  CloudZero

As a cloud cost intelligence solution, we often get asked where we fit in the cloud cost universe — and whether or not we’re an alternative to CloudHealth. The short answer is: it depends. 

The landscape of cloud cost tools is busy, with lots of different solutions that take different approaches to helping companies optimize their cloud costs.

To help answer this question, we thought we’d lay out the cloud cost landscape as we see it. 

This blog isn’t intended to say any particular tool is better or worse. Instead, it’s about helping you identify a tool that best matches your use case — and maybe provide you with some other options if you’re only looking at alternatives to CloudHealth and similar bigger players. 

VMware CloudHealth


Year Founded: 2012

Category: Traditional Cloud Cost Management 

Best For: Enterprise companies with multi-cloud and hybrid-cloud needs.

Pricing Model (As of 2/2021 according to AWS Marketplace): Flat rate up to 100K monthly spend, then 3% of monthly spend.

CloudHealth is owned by VMware and has three core focus areas: “simplify cloud financial management, streamline operations, and strengthen security.” They might be right for you if you’re looking for traditional cloud cost management, such as right-sizing, reservation purchasing, and reporting — or if you need a solution that also has functionality beyond cost management, such as security and compliance. 


What About Building Your Own Alternative to CloudHealth? 

Some companies who find their cloud cost management and optimization tools aren’t meeting their needs set out to build their own. 

We outlined how Netflix, Segment, Lyft and others have build specialized tools that go beyond RI and savings plan optimization — and help them understand key metrics like unit economics. Many of them also decentralize cost data to engineering. 

Before you embark on a mission to build your own tool, it’s important to consider the time and resources it would take. Many bigger companies have teams of 5-10 engineers working on these tools to maintain them. 

Here are three questions you can ask yourself before you start building your own. 

Apptio Cloudability  


Year Founded: 2011

Category: Traditional Cloud Cost Management

Best For: Companies with a centralized FinOps team looking for a tool for reporting on spend.

Pricing Model (as of 2/2021 according to AWS Marketplace): Tiered pricing, starting with $54,000 annually for up to $150K/month in cloud spend or up to $5,400,000 for $15M/mo in cloud spend.

Cloudability is owned by Apptio and describes themselves as a tool to “enable IT, finance, and DevOps teams to work together to optimize cloud resources for speed, cost, and quality.” 

Like CloudHealth, they offer traditional cost management functionality, such as reserved instance management, cost reporting, and resource decommissioning. If you’re a CloudHealth customer and looking for an alternative without straying too far from their core functionality, Cloudability could be a good fit for you.

AWS Cost Explorer

AWS Cost Explorer

Year Founded: 2014

Category: AWS Native Tools

Best For: Companies with relatively uncomplex spend.

Pricing Model: Free with AWS.

Cost Explorer is a free tool that AWS offers to all customers. If your requirements are relatively straightforward, and you don’t need visibility across complex, variable infrastructure, Cost Explorer might be enough for you. They also offer features like rightsizing, savings plans recommendations, and cost anomaly alerting



Year Founded: 2011

Category: Traditional Cloud Cost Management 

Best For: Companies looking for more comprehensive compliance functionality, along with cost.

Pricing Model (as of 2/2021 according to AWS Marketplace): 3% cloud spend, plus additional cost for cost and compliance training.

CloudCheckr is known for pairing cost optimization with compliance management. According to Gartner, “The majority of its cost optimization functionality is basic and fails to provide the depth that organizations require to maximize savings while preserving performance. CloudCheckr’s breadth of features, even beyond cost optimization, seems to be traded with lower depth in the cost optimization space.” 

CloudCheckr might be a fit for you if you’re looking for more compliance functionality, along with limited cost optimization.



Year Founded: 2018

Category: Autonomous Savings Management

Best For: Companies looking for a new, modern approach to AWS savings plans and reserved instances.

Pricing Model (as of 2/2021 according to AWS Marketplace): $0.05 per dollar saved on compute and $0.35 per dollar saved on purchased/optimized convertible reserved instances. 

ProsperOps is focused on Savings Plans and Reserved Instances (RIs) — using algorithms, advanced techniques, and continuous execution. If you’re looking for a modern, innovative approach to RIs and Savings Plans, ProsperOps is worth looking into. One of their benefits is that they only charge you for savings — not for a percentage of your spend like other tools.



We’re CloudZero and we offer a new approach to controlling cloud cost — cloud cost intelligence. Built for software-driven companies, we put engineers in control of cloud cost by connecting technical decisions to business outcomes.

If growing your margins is an area of focus for you, we might be a great fit. Here’s where we excel:

  • If you are looking to understand your cost of goods sold (COGS), we can give you a complete view of cost across your business, including AWS and Snowflake.
  • If you want to build a culture of cost conscious engineering, we help you provide relevant views of product features, dev teams, and more — with context for teams to easily explore which costs are changing and why. 
  • If tagging, shared resources, or Kubernetes costs are a source of pain, we make it simple to map cost to your business — without tagging.
  • If you are looking to measure unit cost, like cost per feature, cost per customer, and more — we can help you align cloud cost to your important business metrics.

Here’s what we’re not: If you’re only looking for a tool to right size instances and tell you which RIs to purchase — we’re not it (although we think AWS does a great job of offering those things for free). 

We help you optimize your architecture — because the most disruptive companies have captured entire markets with innovative products with optimized architecture, (not by negotiating a better contract on their RIs).