OK so we were off just a bit on pricing. Clearly ArcGIS Online can be expensive, but that can be said the same of any cloud service. There are situations where the cloud makes sense and where you are nuts for thinking of using it. For now the price of ArcGIS Online is low enough to get started (especially with the free 30 days) that if you’ve been waiting for such a service, you should give it a shot. Otherwise, just stand up your ArcGIS Server in rackspace and be done with it.
Also this might not be a bad time to mention I’m giving a Lighning Talk at the Esri UC on just this subject, where the Cloud makes sense to users. Heh, I totally didn’t even plan that!
Yesterday I asked what did a service credit get you with ArcGIS Online. To me the pricing seemed aggressive, but given that service credits could mean whatever Esri wants them to be, I figured the devil is in the detail. Don Barker signed up and then figured out what a service credit gets you. Go to his blog post for all the detail, but I’ll just pull this out here:
Tile generation – 1 [service] credit per 1000 tiles generated
I can’t imagine that is right. As Brian Flood points out here, that’s just a simple ordinary tile cache. If that pricing is correct, I now see what all the complaining was about, these service credits don’t get you very much and AGO ends up being expensive, quickly. Hopefully Esri will address this with more detail and we can see what you actually get for a service credit.
Wait, service credits aren’t a deal?