Scaling an AI product with DigitalOcean Kubernetes

“Everything with DigitalOcean is well documented and logical. My experience with AWS wasn’t as great because it’s over-complicated with lots of documentation. DigitalOcean cuts down the development time, and it’s stable and much cheaper which I love as well.”
Oleksandr Polishchuk, CTO, Younet

Alex Kapralov is an entrepreneur who has founded several successful businesses, including PixFuture, a programmatic advertising platform. Alex has used DigitalOcean for hosting for many of his ventures, and when he recently started Younet, an AI model creation platform, Alex and his CTO Oleksandr Polishchuk once again turned to DigitalOcean for simple, affordable, and reliable web hosting solutions.

Building an AI product for success

Younet AI is a business automation platform that enables users to create and train personalized AI models so they can quickly respond to emails, conduct personal tasks, automate client communication, analyze data, and more. Younet aims to increase access to AI tools and make it simple for end users to personalize AI models without technical expertise.

Younet’s journey began at the tail end of 2021, sparked by a simple yet revolutionary idea: to automate the algorithm in ad delivery. This concept was the seed that sprouted into the formation of Younet in 2022. In 2023, the Younet beta platform was released. As Younet was first being built, the team knew they would use DigitalOcean due to their success with the cloud platform in their previous businesses. They knew DigitalOcean was cheaper than other cloud providers, and found it easier to use as well, without having unnecessary products and features.

“I can use DigitalOcean either through the user interface or the API or CLI and everything is well documented and logical. My experience with AWS wasn’t as great because it’s over-complicated with lots of documentation. DigitalOcean cuts down the development time, and it’s stable and much cheaper which I love as well—DigitalOcean is five times cheaper most of the time.” - Oleksandr Polishchuk, CTO, Younet

In addition to favorable pricing and simple-to-use solutions, Younet also appreciated the range of DigitalOcean products. They use DigitalOcean Kubernetes (DOKS) for scalable microservices, and the platform API for their pipelines, Volumes Block storage, and some Managed Databases. The products from DigitalOcean, in addition to the reliability and scalability of the platform, make it easy for them to grow their business on DigitalOcean infrastructure.

Younet also manages all of their data internally with DigitalOcean, and prioritizes the security of their customer data. They like that DigitalOcean has security compliance and certificates like SOC2 Compliance that reassure them and their customers that their data is protected. Joseph Peris, Business Associate at Younet notes that “We like DigitalOcean’s compliance—the security certificates and compliances gives us confidence in using the services.”

Younet architecture diagram
Younet architecture diagram

Putting simplicity first

As a new startup with a team of just six technical staff, ease of use, documentation, and support from their cloud provider were paramount to the team. They have found all of these with DigitalOcean, praising the CLI and API, and noting that the DigitalOcean documentation means it’s easy to get started, even for junior developers who aren’t experts in cloud infrastructure.

“DigitalOcean’s simplicity cuts down the time to development, which is crucial for startup development—the faster we build it, the faster we get results. It’s also easier for junior developers to get started with DigitalOcean, while providers like Microsoft or Amazon require a lot of expertise just to get started.” - Oleksandr Polishchuk, CTO, Younet

Younet also likes that DigitalOcean doesn’t lock users into one solution or force them to deploy multiple different services just to do one thing, as some of the hyperscaler providers do. They also appreciate the ability to fine tune solutions, with Oleksander saying “There is no black box situation that you don’t have full control over, I prefer to control things and tune them myself. I have this option with DigitalOcean and have done that with Managed Databasese and DigitalOcean Kubernetes.” - Oleksandr Polishchuk, CTO, Younet

DigitalOcean’s library of tutorials on a range of backend topics have also proven useful for the team—Joseph Peris says “I love the articles that DigitalOcean provides for different use cases. If I need to build something specific, it’s very basic to try it out.”

As Younet continues to grow, they are excited to start exploring newer DigitalOcean capabilities, like GPU compute provided through Paperspace. They are looking to expand their product to serve enterprise use cases which are more much repetitive and frequent, which will require having a solid infrastructure foundation and the ability to scale on demand without overburdening any parts of the system. They look forward to continuing to leverage DigitalOcean’s products, and feel confident that DigitalOcean’s SMB-tailored solutions and customer service will continue to exceed their expectations as they grow.

Younet

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