Datadog vs New Relic

Better Stack Team
Updated on July 2, 2022

Monitoring the performance of modern applications and infrastructure evolved from simple CLI utilities to complex, AI-powered, full-observability SaaS tools. Application Performance Monitoring and Observability tools are considered the key to the success of any digital project.

Monitoring modern, distributed infrastructures and applications requires complex and reliable monitoring solutions. Datadog and New Relic belong to the go-to vendors. Let's take a look at how they compare in 2022.

Datadog

Datadog dash

Datadog offers an infrastructure monitoring and security platform capable of collecting, visualizing, and analyzing data across systems, apps, and services. Datadog offers integrations with basically any tool from the modern stack. It integrates with SaaS and cloud providers, various automation tools, monitoring, source control, databases, or servers.

New Relic

New Relic dash

New Relic offers complete monitoring with an intelligent end-to-end Application Performance Monitoring, alongside other monitoring and management features such as log management and monitoring, K8s monitoring, synthetics.

Products

Datadog performs great in cloud monitoring and security management. It easily monitors and collects data from multi-cloud infrastructures and offers a complete observability tool when combining its products. Datadog handles the entire DevOps and SRE workflow, including Incident management and SIEM. However, with the amount of Datadog’s features, which often intertwine, it’s often hard to navigate the product.

New Relic started as an APM tool which drove its initial success and growth. Since its creation, New Relic has added more and more features. They include Pixie for Kubernetes, CodeStream for debugging, ML-powered monitoring, log management, or infrastructure monitoring. This evolution makes it a complete observability and management platform built around an APM tool.

Pricing

Datadog pricing Datadog is cheaper at first glance, but its pricing is hard to navigate. Each product and Add-On has a specific base for pricing. Without a contract, bills often skyrocket on their own, according to users and reviews. This requires its users to carefully monitor their spending. Reviews suggest that a mistake such as spinning up multiple hosts instead of one can significantly increase the monthly bill. This is due to Datadog's pricing where some products bill per host, others per data and actions.

New Relic pricing

New Relic starts with a free plan and then bases the price on data consumption. Its pay-as-you-go pricing model is more expensive than Datadog but compensates for it with real-time monitoring, AI and ML-boosted features, and unified pricing.

On-Boarding and maintenance

Datadog learning

Deploying Datadog requires some minor CLI interaction, but apart from that, it’s rather easy to start with. After the initial signup, Datadog requires you to answer a few questions about your stack and then proposes a list of agents and documentation with commands necessary to deploy Datadog. The number of options and features might seem overwhelming for new users. Datadog offers a learning center with many free courses covering the whole platform.

New Relic learning

Deploying New Relic is much easier and requires zero to no scripting. After the initial signup, New Relic offers a guided setup with minimal manual work. On the other hand, day-to-day operations and troubleshooting issues are a challenge. Luckily, New Relic also offers a learning platform with self-paced courses, webinars, and a certified exam.

Third-party Integrations and Data Collection

Datadog automatically parses JSON-formatted logs and uses Grok parser for other formats. Datadog offers a wide range of integrations and provides community APIs and plugins.

New Relic is continuously shifting from the collecting agents to a more standardized, open-source data collection approach.

Both tools offer a similar list of integrations with third-party partners and tools.

Community

Datadog’s community sees a great organic reach on multiple developer forums and is active on GitHub. Datadog actively boosts community development but has no centralized community platform. They post regularly on their blogs, but the conversation there is kept alive synthetically via “community teams”.

New Relic offers an Explorer’s hub updated by users and New Relic’s support. It offers various topics, interesting links, and invitations to New Relic-backed events such as FutureStack.

Customer Support and Documentation

In the case of Datadog, based on the reviews, it feels like many small and mid-business clients fall through customer support and are left to consult the forums and community support. The documentation covers the entire platform but is often written in a complex and specific language, forcing users to circle back to broader topics.

New Relic’s Success and Account Management teams completely omit support for small and mid-business clients. While they have a lot of guides and learning materials, after subscribing, users are often on their own.

Reviews

Comparison G2

In a Gartner peer review, New Relic beats Datadog with only a 0.1-star difference, and both tools have a 9/10 willing to recommend rate, but New Relic has almost three times more reviews.

Users

Both Datadog and New Relic are quite successful in the Mid-sized business field and Enterprise. Datadog is used by companies such as The Washington Post, 21st Century Fox, Samsung, Comcast, or Nginx.

New Relic is used by Epic Games, Postman, Cloudflare, GitHub, or Atlassian.

Summary

Datadog is a great tool for those who want to control their infrastructure and can go without real-time monitoring features. The emphasis on multi-cloud environment monitoring and cloud security is evident, and Datadog delivers.

New Relic brings an observability suite built around an APM solution. It’s complex, complicated, and expensive but offers very powerful features. New Relic often needs to be integrated with third-party incident management and alerting solutions.

Choosing a monitoring solution with transparent and reasonable pricing, reliable incident management, and responsive customer support, like Better Uptime will help you achieve a truly stress-free monitoring experience.

Better Uptime as a modern alternative

According to G2 Better Uptime, after only a few years on the market, beats New Relic One and Datadog in every reviewed category, including Ease of Use, Setup, and Administration.

G2 comparison BU

Better Uptime is an infrastructure monitoring suite with incident management built-in. It’s part of the Better Stack, an observability suite combining the best practices from monitoring, log management, incident management, and outage communication.

Check Uptime, Ping, Ports, SSL and more.
Get Slack, SMS and phone incident alerts.
Easy on-call duty scheduling.
Create free status page on your domain.
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