Product updates

Introducing DigitalOcean Functions: A powerful serverless computing solution

Posted: May 24, 20224 min read

DigitalOcean is committed to providing products that serve developers throughout their journey, and access to serverless computing has been one of the most popular requests from DigitalOcean users who want to spend less time managing their infrastructure and more time building impactful applications. In recent years, serverless computing has gained tremendous popularity among developers building modern apps, and according to IDC’s IaaSView buyer survey, 25% of cloud IaaS buyers intend to utilize serverless functions in the next 12 months. In September 2021, DigitalOcean acquired Nimbella to accelerate our introduction of serverless computing, and today we’re delighted to announce the general availability of our serverless product, DigitalOcean Functions.

DigitalOcean Functions is a fast, scalable, and cost-effective compute solution that enables you to build quickly, scale automatically, and save costs by removing the need to pay for idle resources. Functions are snippets of code that run in response to event-based triggers, and builders of all kinds can now create serverless functions on DigitalOcean for a variety of purposes, including serverless APIs for your web apps and mobile apps.

Benefits of DigitalOcean Functions

DigitalOcean Functions enable higher developer productivity and lower operating costs. Some of the benefits include:

  • Enabling developers to focus more on their code. Since the provisioning and scaling of resources are managed by DigitalOcean, you can spend your valuable time improving your app.
  • Saving costs by eliminating the need to maintain idle servers. Since functions run in response to certain events, you pay for resources only when they are running.
  • Automatic scaling based on demand. DigitalOcean will handle scaling of the infrastructural components so you don’t have to.
  • Getting to market faster without having to learn complex infrastructure-oriented concepts such as containers and Kubernetes. You can write functions in your preferred language and deploy them easily in just a few steps.

Why use DigitalOcean Functions

With DigitalOcean Functions, we manage the resources and automatically scale them (either up or down) based on demand. This solution is uniquely positioned to serve the needs of developers and businesses by providing the ability to:

  • Build apps that require on-demand functions as well as long-running containers. In many scenarios, developers want to extend their apps running on containers or static sites with serverless components. For example, a developer with a container-based app could add a function as an API endpoint, enabling them to easily extend their app running on containers with serverless components. This results in faster time to market and lower costs since they don’t need to pre-provision containers, and means variations in traffic to parts of the app are handled without a full app rewrite.
  • Test your functions before pushing to production. DigitalOcean Functions includes a developer console and a command line tool so you can develop functions locally using your favorite editors and IDEs, ship quickly to the cloud, and test your serverless functions before committing your code to GitHub or GitLab to deploy your app to production. The developer tooling is free to use, conveniently accessible from your local terminal, and available to you out of the box.
  • Seamlessly integrate with Managed Databases. DigitalOcean offers a comprehensive set of services including Managed Databases for MySQL, Redis, PostgreSQL, and MongoDB so that you can easily add a managed database in the app creation workflow. Your app can have a DigitalOcean functions component that’s triggered based on HTTP requests to update the database. For example, if you have an e-commerce site and a user adds an item to the shopping cart, an API can trigger a function to update the database that maintains inventory data. Connections to the database utilize security features such as trusted sources.
  • Enjoy support for common languages and runtimes. DigitalOcean Functions supports many of the most popular runtimes, including Node.js, Python, Go, and PHP. We take care of applying patches and other updates to ensure the execution environment is stable and secure.

Pricing, documentation, and availability

You get 90,000GB-seconds of usage for free per month and overages are charged at $0.0000185/GB-second. There is no separate charge for function invocations. In other words, the pricing is simpler, more affordable, and predictable.

Please refer to the pricing page to learn more about the limits of memory and runtime for DigitalOcean Functions.

  • Regional availability: DigitalOcean Functions will be available in: NYC, AMS, SFO, SGP, LON, FRA, TOR, BLR regions.
  • Documentation: View our documentation to learn more.
  • Sample apps: Learn about sample apps available for DigitalOcean Functions.
  • Walkthrough video: See below for a walkthrough of DigitalOcean Functions.

Looking forward

Over the next few months, we’ll be adding more ways for you to invoke and configure your functions such as background functions, scheduling, and many more exciting use cases. We’ll also be adding support for more language runtimes and scheduled functions. Stay tuned for more updates!

We hope that you’re excited about this release and that you’ll give DigitalOcean Functions a try. Check out the docs for more information and join our upcoming serverless event in the Americas and APAC to dive deeper into the product, how-to guidance, and use cases on June 7, 2022. If you’d like to have a conversation about using DigitalOcean Functions in your business, please contact our sales team.

Happy coding!

Serverless Business Unit at DigitalOcean


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