AWS vs. Azure Pricing – Cost Comparison [2023] 

by | DevOps

Microsoft Azure Services

Are you considering moving to the public cloud? Selecting between AWS or Azure can be a difficult task. Choosing the right cloud provider can help you save hundreds of dollars. This article will provide a detailed overview of Azure vs. AWS price comparison and help you select the cost-effective platform for your upcoming project. 

Today Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft’s Azure are the most commonly used cloud providers worldwide. They both offer a wide range of services in the IT world, including Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions. Also, these cloud providers offer a diverse range of computing, analytics, storage, and networking services. 

Azure Vs AWS Price Comparison 

The primary purpose of the price comparison of Azure and AWS is to determine the area where you can save money. You can play smart and save hundreds of dollars by using some Azure services and others offered by AWS. Azure vs. AWS price comparison is usually difficult due to frequent price changes and the continuous addition of new services.  

Also, improvements in existing services complicate this comparison. The places where the service is used can also make a big difference. These prices may also differ as a result of a committed payment discount applied to the service.

Before going into an in-depth price comparison of AWS and Azure, let’s compare both cloud providers in detail. 

Microsoft Azure 

Azure is famous for its wide range of storage cloud types to fulfill the multiple requirements of every company. Big companies with high data storage should consider using Queue Storage and Data Lake Storage. On the other hand, Bulk Storage is ideal for firms that need to store a large number of unstructured data.   

Microsoft Azure offers a diverse range of services, including computing, storage, networking, and analytics. Therefore, multiple factors contribute to the Azure pricing model. These factors may include management level, capacity required, and location. Azure provides different pricing models, including pay-as-you-go pricing, reserved, stop instance, etc. Also, it offers a free tier for some specific models. 

Amazon Web Services 

AWS became famous in 2006. At that time, it was in the limelight due to the Elastic Compute Cloud and Simple Storage Service. With time it expanded its services. In 2009, it started providing its services in Elastic Block Store and Amazon Cloud Front. Currently, it is offering more than 18,000 services globally. These services range from machine learning to storage and testing tools.  

AWS cloud server offers scalability, reliability, efficiency, and accessibility to information. It contains rich tools, including management, security, databases, analytics, and much more. Amazon Web Services is a commonly used cloud provider with the biggest market share in the global market. It is because of its pay-as-you-go model for its services. The user only pays when he uses the instances. Once they stop using them, they are not required to pay any termination or additional fees. 

What Are the Pricing Models of Azure? 

For most services, Azure follows a pay-as-you-go model. It means you only have to pay for the instances you are using. Just like AWS, the exact cost you are paying for Azure depends on multiple factors, including: 

  • type of service you avail 
  • payment plan 
  • location 
  • capacity you utilize 

Some of the most common pricing models involve the following:  

  • Pay-As-You-Go Pricing Model 

In the pay-as-you-go pricing model, you are required to pay only for resources you have used. It will charge you per second. Also, no upfront payments or long-term commitments are needed. It provides you with an option to increase or decrease the resources according to your workload needs. This pricing model is best when you are not clear about your requirement for Azure usage in advance. 

  • Azure Reserved VMs Pricing 

This pricing model can help you reduce the costs of the cloud and offer a 72% discount when you commit to using Azure for one to three years. It allows you to pay for reservations either on a monthly basis or upfront. Azure Reserved Instances is ideal for organizations having consistent resource usage. 

  • Azure Spot VMs Pricing 

It helps users access the unused Azure compute capacity at low prices. The Azure Spot pricing model allows consumers to set the maximum price they are willing to pay on compute capacity. With this pricing model, you can get a discount of up to 90% off pay-as-you-go rates. It is commonly used for fault-tolerant workloads. Also, you do not need to make any long-term commitment.  

  • Azure Hybrid Benefit Pricing 

It allows you to use existing Software Assurance-enabled SQL Server and Windows Server licenses. Azure Hybrid Benefit pricing will provide you with an 85% discount off Azure pay-as-you-go pricing. It is less expensive than other pricing models as you do not need to purchase Windows licenses separately. You can also utilize this discounting model for SUSE Linux and RedHat subscriptions. 

What Are Standard AWS Pricing Models? 

Most AWS follow pay-as-you-go model. Also, many AWS do not require contracts, cancellation fees, or upfront payments. Hence, you can avail these services right away and customize them according to your organization’s needs. Several factors contribute to the cost you are paying. They include: 

  • service you are availing 
  • the location and availability zone 
  • the amount of capacity you need 
  • your payment plans 
  • management level  

Some of the most common AWS pricing models include: 

  • On-Demand Instances 

In this pricing model, you only pay for computing and database capacity per hour or per second. You are not required to pay any upfront payments. Depending on the needs of your application, you can increase or decrease your compute capacity. The AWS On-Demand pricing model is suggested for users who want cost-effective and flexible instances with no long-term commitments. This model is ideal as you only have to pay for the instance you choose to use.  

  • Spot Instances Pricing 

Amazon Spot Instances allows you to bid for and use spare AWS computing capacity. You can avail spot instances at up to 90% discounts compared to On-Demand pricing. This model is based on a demand-and-supply approach and supports per-hour as well as per-second billing methods. This pricing model is ideal for users with urgent computing requirements for a large-scale dynamic workload. Also, the Amazon Spot Instances model is best for applications with flexible start and end times. 

  • Reserved Instances Pricing 

This pricing model provides you with a discount of 75% compared to the On-Demand pricing model. Consumers who commit to using Reserved Instances over one or three years are eligible for this discount offer. This model is ideal for predictable and continuous usage. Also, it follows the per-hour billing method. Hence, this pricing model is significantly cheaper than On-Demand Instance pricing.  

  • Dedicated Hosts Pricing 

A Dedicated Host allows you to rent servers from AWS for your dedicated and private use. It can lower the price by allowing you to use existing server-bound software licenses such as SQL, Oracle, or Window server. A dedicated host supports the per-hour billing approach. Also, you only have to pay for the hour when your host is in active status. It is best for enterprises that prioritize security and reliability. 


Why Choose Azure Over AWS? 

Azure offers more functionality than AWS and is relatively simple to use. AWS can be complex as it demands a lot of documentation. On the other hand, Azure utilizes technologies such as Windows, Active Directory, and Linux, that most people are already aware of. 

Azure VS AWS: Which Cloud Provider Should You Select In 2023? 

Azure vs. AWS price comparison indicates that Azure is more expensive than AWS. The one you choose for your organization solely depends on the requirements of the company. Azure is the ideal choice when your organization is looking for a Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) provider or needs window integration. AWS is the finest option for companies looking for infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) or a broad range of tools. 

What Is the Main Difference Between Azure And AWS? 

Microsoft provides the Azure cloud service. For databases, it utilizes MySQL, SQL databases, Cosmos DB, etc. Whereas, Amazon provides the AWS cloud service. It uses a simple storage service to store data and MySQL, SQL databases, Cosmos DB, etc., for the database.


Written by Kashif Hassan


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