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7 Snowflake Alternatives to Help You Lower Costs

If you are looking to improve visibility into your Snowflake costs, here are seven alternatives you should consider.

Is your current cloud cost tool giving you the cost intelligence you need?  Most tools are manual, clunky, and inexact. Discover how CloudZero takes a new  approach to organizing your cloud spend.Click here to learn more.

The Snowflake data cloud provides storage, reporting, and analytics for organizations that rely on their data to run their day-to-day operations. Snowflake has become a top data warehouse solution for its manageability, superior scalability, always-on data security, advanced analytics, and robust accessibility since its launch from stealth mode in 2014.

But Snowflake isn't perfect. For example, Snowflake is a cloud-only solution, so it might not be the best choice for organizations with on-premises data. Snowflake data storage costs can also spiral out of control if you’re not careful.

The usual alternatives to Snowflake are Amazon Redshift, Microsoft SQL Server, Azure Synapse Analytics, and Google's BigQuery. Alternatively, if you are looking for other cloud data platforms similar to Snowflake, here are seven to consider.

1. Snowflake with CloudZero cloud cost intelligence

AWS And Snowflake Costs Combined

Founded: 2016

Pricing: Custom to your environment — NOT a percentage of your cloud spend

Best for: Businesses looking to improve their visibility into Snowflake costs  

This is an ideal combination when you know Snowflake is the perfect cloud data solution for your needs but are struggling to increase visibility into your Snowflake costs.

With CloudZero’s Snowflake Cost Intelligence, you can access cost insights from both AWS and Snowflake on one platform. Even better, you can break down these costs into granular insights like cost per feature, cost per team, cost per project, cost of goods sold (COGS), etc.  

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Both CloudZero and Snowflake run entirely on cloud infrastructure, making them perfect for cloud-native cost intelligence. You can also connect to the CloudZero platform within minutes and start generating value immediately.

Moreover, you'll receive a Cloud Cost Analyst who's an experienced FinOps professional to help you optimize Snowflake costs from the very beginning. 

With CloudZero's real-time cost anomaly detection, you'll also know when you're about to go over your Snowflake budget so you can avoid overspending. Interested in testing CloudZero for your use case? Schedule a demo here.

2. Panoply - Managed ELT and cloud data warehouse

Panoply

Founded: 2015

Pricing: 60-day proof of value trial free. Annual plans start at $639 or $699 monthly.

Best for: Organizations seeking a data warehouse with integrated ETF features

Panoply is both a smart and secure cloud data platform and managed, no-code ETL (extract, transform, load) tool. The ready-to-use ETL integrations connect seamlessly with dozens of data sources. 

The platform also detects your data type automatically, scales hands-free, comes with a monitoring system, and offers pre-built SQL queries. You can then query your data directly in the Panoply platform, your BI, or your favorite analytical notebook.    

3. IBM Db2 - Hybrid cloud data warehouse compatible with Netezza and Oracle

IBM Db2

Founded: 1983

Pricing: Various plan options

Best for: Organizations of different sizes seeking a hybrid cloud data platform for processing and in-database analytics 

Thanks to its MPP architecture, IBM Db2 provides enterprises with an extensible and high-performance data warehouse solution. In addition, the product uses BLU technology for processing and supports in-database analytics. 

Yet Db2 is fairly easy to deploy and operate. In addition, it's an excellent option for organizations that prefer to keep data on-premises for privacy purposes while combining the benefits of public and private cloud services.

Db2 is suited for companies of all sizes due to its scalability, from running it on a laptop during development to extensive cloud infrastructure in the public cloud.

4. Cloudera - Hadoop-based hybrid cloud data system

Cloudera

Founded: 2008

Pricing: Hourly rate per CCU (depends on use case)

Best for: Companies looking for a hybrid cloud alternative to Snowflake

With Cloudera, you get a Hadoop-based and real-time cloud data storage, processing, and analytics platform and a management system for all phases of your enterprise data lifecycle. You can use it on all public clouds as well as in your data center or private cloud. 

Management areas within Cloudera include migration, security, metadata, and compliance. The platform is also built on an open-source platform, supporting multiple data stores and is scalability. 

5. Databricks - Combine data lake and data warehouse capabilities in one platform

Databricks

Founded: 2013

Pricing: 14-Day free trial. Pay as you go model

Best for: Companies looking to consolidate all their data, analytics, and AI workloads across a variety of public clouds

The Databricks data analytics platform is based on Apache Spark Technology. The people who built Apache Spark, MLFlow, and Delta Lake also developed Databricks.

The platform combines data lakes and data warehouse functionality into one package. Additionally, the platform is built on an open-source foundation, which allows it to support most types of data, AI functionalities, and analytics. 

If you are an Azure customer, Databricks, in partnership with Microsoft Azure (Azure Databricks), delivers three environments; Databricks Data Science and Engineering, Databricks SQL, and Databricks Machine Learning. However, it also supports workloads in AWS and Alibaba public clouds.

6. PostgreSQL - Open-source Snowflake alternative for enterprises

PostgreSQL

Founded: 1986

Pricing: Free

Best for: Organizations with experienced data engineers who want to reduce cloud costs by using a robust open-source platform

Consider PostgreSQL if you are a large organization looking for an open-source object-relational database platform. PostgreSQL has a stellar reputation for its extensive and supportive community, reliable performance, solid stability, robust access control system, and reliability. 

PostgreSQL supports many data types, from structured and document (JSON, XML, etc.) to custom types and primitives (numeric, integer, etc.). However, PostgreSQL requires a separate ETL tool to push data into storage.

7. Dremio Cloud - Free and open-source data lake platform

Dremio Cloud

Founded: 2015

Pricing: Free for Standard Plan. $0.39.DCU for Enterprise Edition

Best for: Data engineers and analysts who love SQL and want to query their lakehouse in production

Dremio is another alternative to Snowflake for organizations, showcasing a data lakehouse platform built for SQL and based on open source technologies.

With Dremio, you can use BI dashboards and interactive analytics directly on your data lake. Like Databricks, Dremio enables you to combine data lake and data warehouse functionality to ensure you don't lose insights from any of your data. 

It also offers an enterprise edition platform, which includes end-to-end security and compliance management features. The edition also provides Dremio Sonar (SQL engine powered by Apache Arrow for data warehouse functionality on Amazon S3 object storage) and Dremio Arctic (data and metadata management service for Apache Iceberg).  

Honorable mentions: Presto, Teradata, Druid, Exasol, Rockset.

Is Snowflake The Best Cloud Data Platform For You?

With CloudZero’s Snowflake Cost Intelligence, you can map costs directly to architectural and technical engineering decisions, Meaning, you can identify exactly which products and features contribute to your total cloud spend. 

With granular details like cost per customer, team, project, etc, you’ll have the unit cost insight you need to pinpoint where to optimize costs without sacrificing innovation.

If you run workloads in AWS as well, CloudZero consolidates AWS and Snowflake cost insights in one platform. This can help you see the complete costs of running your software products. Request a demo today to experience Snowflake cost intelligence for yourself.   

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