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Ably vs Realtime.co

Let us help you discover why Ably is clearly the better choice.

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Why it matters?
Value
Transparent usage based pricing  

Ably's pricing is transparent. You pay for the messages, peak active channels and peak connections you use for the month. You can either pay for what you've used at the end of the month, or reserve capacity in advance each month and benefit from a discount.

Realtime.co packages are priced in tiers meaning that if you were on their 10k connection package at $100 per month, and you needed to grow to 12k connections, you would have to upgrade to the next tier at $250 (2.5x the price). With Ably, you'd just pay for an additional 2k connections for less than $20.

See Ably's pricing calculator
Example pricing comparison:
  • 4k peak connections
  • 12m messages p/month
$77.99 p/month $100 p/month  

Our flexible packages ensure we deliver value to our customers who pay for what they use. Realtime.co's package for up to 10k connections starts at $100 and thus only delivers value if you use exactly 10k connections and all 101m messages per month.

See how much you can save
Pricing that incentivizes you to grow  

Our cost per message and connection goes down as you use more - customers benefit from the economies of scale and paying for what they use. See Ably's pricing calculator.

Realtime.co offers packages in tiers which means if you exceed the connections for that tier, you would probably upgrade to the more expensive tier. For example, moving from 10k to 25k connections hikes the price from $100 to $250 a month.

Estimate how much you'll pay once you grow
Performance
Global datacenters locations 24 3-6

As we have datacenters globally, we can ensure that your users always experience the lowest possible latency by connecting to the closest datacenter, and have complete availability by connecting to alternative healthy datacenters when necessary.

Realtime.co approximately 3-6 datacenters spread across three geographical locations, Europe, US East and US West. Customers that are not close to those datacenters may experience some latency.

Find out more about Ably's datacenters
Latency based routing

Both Ably and Realtime.co offer latency based routing that ensures users anywhere in the world connect to the closest datacenter available to them.

Find out more about Ably's latency based DNS
Binary encoded messages

Encoding messages in binary format is faster. It reduces bandwidth to send and receive messages, and streamlines the processing time for clients and servers when encoding and decoding messages.

Realtime.co does not support binary encoded messages.

Find out more about our binary protocol
Redundancy and Reliability
Mesh architecture / no central point of failure / self-healing cluster Unknown

The Ably platform is designed with no single point of failure and to be self-healing. All our customers benefit from their apps running on all of our datacenters providing resilience, reliability and low latencies globally.

Find out more about Ably's mesh architecture
Autonomous datacenters Unknown

Ably's servers are located in over 14 datacenters covering 5 continents with each datacenter designed to operate as part of the global cluster when available, but operate autonomously when necessary.

Find out where Ably's servers are located
Data replicated in multiple regions

Ably stores every message in at least two datacenters and separate geographical regions. This ensures that an outage in any datacenter or region cannot result in data loss.

Realtime.co does not persist messages so any message lost in transit is never recovered.

Find out about Ably's QoS and message delivery guarantee
QoS & message delivery guarantee

Ably provides guaranteed message delivery and continuity across disconnections. Publishers only receive an ACK when data is persisted in two locations, and subscribers never lose data during brief disconnections as we maintain connection state for each client on our servers.

With Realtime.co, if a message is published whilst a client is briefly disconnected (such as going through a tunnel or changing networks), then the message will never arrive to that client.

Find out about Ably's message delivery guarantee
100% uptime guarantee On demand

Ably uniquely offers a 100% uptime guarantee to all paying customers. We stand by our 100% uptime promise - if we are unable to meet that goal, we offer refunds.

100% SLA is available for corporate customers on custom packages.

Find out about Ably's 100% uptime guarantee
Features
Message and worker queues

Data published into Ably's realtime system can be moved into traditional message queues for realtime or batch processing.

Realtime.co does not offer message queuing features or a means to distribute data using once-only pattern to your server workers.

Find out more about our Reactor Queues
WebHooks

Ably's WebHooks provide a means to get messages, channel lifecycle and present events pushed to your servers over HTTP. Both Ably and Realtime.co support WebHooks.

Find out more about WebHooks
Server-less cloud function invocation Partial

Ably can trigger server-less functions on any third platforms such as Amazon Lambda, Microsoft Azure or Google Function.

Realtime.co recommends the use of a generic WebHook to be delivered to an API Gateway that in turn triggers a function.

Find out more about Reactor Functions
Presence

Presence allows you to subscribe to events when users or devices enter or leave channels. This is a useful feature for collaborative apps, games and chat rooms.

Realtime.co supports a maximum of 100 members per channel. Ably supports 200 by default and far more upon request.

Find out more about Presence
Message history

Ably's message history feature provides a means for clients or servers to retrieve messages that were previously published on a channel.

Realtime.co does not support message history.

Find out more about our History API
Realtime data firehose

Stream your realtime data published within the Ably platform directly to another streaming or queueing service such as Amazon Kinesis, Apache Storm or Kafka.

Find out more about our Reactor Firehose
Reliable message ordering

Ably ensures that messages are delivered to persistently connected subscribers in the order they were published on each channel.

Realtime.co does not provide these guarantees.

Find out more about reliable ordering
Push notifications

Both Realtime.co and Ably offer push notifications.

Find out more about Push Notifications
Message and worker queues

Data published into Ably's realtime system can be moved into traditional message queues for realtime or batch processing.

Realtime.co does not offer any message queuing features or ways to distribute data using once-only pattern to your server workers.

Find out more about our Queues
Custom domain endpoint (CNAME)

Ably supports custom domains for our Enterprise customers allowing them to connect to Ably using a CNAME such as "realtime.your-company.com".

Realtime.co does not provide support for custom CNAME endpoints.

Find out more about our custom domains
Client libraries and protocol support
Native client libraries for every popular platform

Both Ably and Realtime.co offer a considerable range of client libraries for every popular platform.

View our client libraries
Embedded devices Limited

Using our protocol adapters, our customers can use the large selection of PubNub embedded client libraries for low energy and other embedded devices.

Realtime.co has a small set of client libraries suitable for embedded devices.

See the list of supported embedded libraries
White-label browser library

Ably can provide a white-labelled browser Javascript library with a namespace of your choosing and no reference to Ably in the code.

Realtime.co does not, as far as we are aware, offer white-label libraries.

Find out about our white-label libraries
Connectivity
Continuity and connection state recovery

Ably provides continuity for clients that become disconnected for reasons such as going through a tunnel or changing networks. Ably stores the connection state for each client on its servers so that clients that reconnect within two minutes can resume their connection and receive all messages published whilst they were disconnected.

With Realtime.co, if a message is published whilst a client is not connected, then the message is effectively lost and will never be delivered to that client. Realtime.co expects the developer to handle data loss due to loss of connectivity.

Find out more about connection state recovery
1st class WebSocket support

WebSockets are widely regarded as the most efficient HTTP compatible transport for full duplex realtime communication between devices.

View our supported transports
Fallback to Comet (XHR) and Long Polling for older browsers

Whilst most modern devices support WebSockets, there are situations where the device or the network environment requires use of HTTP transports.

View our supported transports
Security
TLS connection

Both Ably and Realtime.co offer TLS connections ensuring that all data in transit is encrypted.

Find out more about SSL/TLS
Token based authentication

Token based authentication ensures your private key is never shared and instead a short-lived token is used to authenticate.

Ably and Realtime.co allow configurable policies to be embedded in a token ensuring you have complete control over what actions your users can perform such as limiting which channels they can subscribe or publish to.

Find out more about Ably's authentication
Configurable private key permissions

Ably provides support for private API keys with configurable permissions including restrictions on channels or operations.

Realtime.co does not support configurable permissions for keys.

Find out more about API keys
Configurable channel permissions

Ably provides channel rules providing you with the flexibility to maintain control of your channels, such as requiring SSL/TLS or only identified authenticated clients on a channel.

Realtime.co does not provide channel configuration rules.

Find out more about channel rules
Encrypted message payloads

Ably's AES encryption allows messages to be encrypted using the provided private key before they are published to Ably. As a result, messages are practically impossible intercept and view for anyone including Ably. For very sensitive data, this ensures you can safely use us knowing your payloads are always secure and opaque.

Realtime.co does not provide payload encryption in their client libraries.

Find out more about Ably's encryption

* All information regarding our competitors was obtained on or before January 2016. It is therefore possible that some of this information may now be out of date. If you believe that any of this information is incorrect, please get in touch with us so that we can correct it immediately.

Migrating to Ably

Join the others and upgrade your realtime platform.

  • Technical migration assistance

    We're happy to offer technical assistance from our engineering team to customers moving across from Realtime.co.

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