Which APM Tool is the Heavyweight Champion?

Let’s talk about application performance. Any consumer who has experienced the infamous spinning beachball knows that slow or glitchy performance can mean K.O. for a company’s bottom line and reputation. 

To minimize the impact of this blow, smart companies are using Application Performance Management (APM) to monitor performance in real-time. This live performance feedback can help teams quickly identify and address system bottlenecks and poor performance. 

Looking for a partner to help you get started with APM? KMS is here to help! 




Choosing the right APM tool enables companies to monitor the pulse of the application performance and effectively roll with the punches.

However, there are a number of tools on the market and knowing which one to choose can be overwhelming. Of course, we have you covered and have pitted some of the top APM tools against one another to help you choose the right one. 

With that said…

*Ding, Ding* 5 of the top APM tools step into the ring. Which will come out on top? 


How to Choose the Right APM Tool

While each of these tools throws a good punch, in reality–choosing the right tool really comes down to your application and organization’s specific needs. 

While this does not make for the most entertaining boxing match, it does make it easier for your organization to look critically and find a tool that works for you. 

Of course, there are a few important questions you should consider when choosing an APM tool: 

  • What languages does the program support?
  • How well does it integrate with your other tools?
  • What application analytics does the tool offer?
  • Do the monitoring features meet your needs and does the tool provide code-level diagnostics?
  • How much does it cost?


Comparing the Top APM Tools

With those 5 questions in mind how do the contenders compare? 

APM Tool: New Relic

Supported Languages: Java, .NET, Node.js, PHP, Python, Ruby, Go

Integrations: Over 200 plug-in integrations 

Application Analytics: New Relic analytics uses applied intelligence to give insight into the source and recommend solutions for application errors. 

Monitoring Features / Code-level diagnostics: APM, Infrastructure, Browser, Synthetics, Mobile. Gives you code-level visibility

Cost: Offers 30-day free trial. 

$9.37 to $200 per host per month (billed annually). Pricing varies depending on the number of hours each host/instance is running, the size of the host/instance, and the total number of hosts/instances.

Offers a price calculator. 

APM Tool: AppDynamics(Typically supports big enterprises)

Supported Languages: Java, .NET, PHP, Node.js, C++, Python, Go

Integrations: 190+ supported technologies

Application Analytics: AppDynamics offers real-time analytics and data visualization. Provides  transaction, log, and browser-mobile analytics.  

Monitoring Features / Code-level diagnostics: APM, End User Monitoring, Business Performance Monitoring, Infrastructure Visibility. Offers immediate and automated code-level diagnostics. 

Cost: Contact Vendor for Pricing.

APM Pro: contact vendor for pricing (from internet: $300 per unit / mo, $3,300.00/year )APM Advanced: contact vendor for pricing.

APM Peak: contact vendor for pricing.

APM Tool: Stackify Retrace

Supported Languages: Java, .NET, PHP, Node.js, Ruby, Python

Integrations: Integrates with AppVeyor, Atlassian Bamboo, AWS CodePipeline, CircleCI, Jenkins, OCtopus Deploy, TeamCity, Vidual Studio Team Services

Application Analytics: Automatically monitors and tracks key metrics for Java, PHP, and .NET applications. Also allows for customer application metrics. 

Monitoring Features / Code-level diagnostics: APM, Code Profiling, Error Tracking, Centralized Logging, App & Server Metrics. Get deep, code-level insights.

Cost: $50 per month/server 

Retrace APM for small servers – $25/month per server.

Retrace monitoring without code profiling (APM) – $15/month per server.

Retrace APM for pre-production servers – $10/month per server.

14-day free trial 

APM Tool: Scouter (Open Source Tool) 

Supported Languages: Java

Integrations: Plugins include: email alerts, InfluxDB, and transfer alerts to Telegram, Slack, Line, and DinTalk, etc. 

Application Analytics: Provides metrics about users (Active user, Recently used user, Today visitor), services (Active service, TPS, Response time, Application profiles), and resources (CPU, Memory, Network and Heap usage, Connection pools etc.)

Monitoring Features / Code-level diagnostics: Scouter has the functionality to monitor targets like Java agent for Web applications, Zipkin, Redis, NginX, MongoDB, RabbitMQ and Elasticsearch. 

The tool monitors the service transactions as an individual.(XLOG)

Cost: Free

APM Tool: Amazon CloudWatch (Cloud Provider Tool) 

Supported Languages: Java, Go, PowerShell, Node.js, C#, Python, and Ruby

Integrations: CloudWatch is natively integrated with more than 70 AWS services such as Amazon EC2, Amazon DynamoDB, Amazon S3, Amazon ECS, AWS Lambda, Amazon API Gateway, etc.

Application Analytics: Built-in metrics: collect default metrics from more than 70 AWS services. 

Granular data and extended retention: allowing to monitor trends and seasonality with 15 months of metric data (storage and retention). This data allows the user to perform historical analysis to fine-tune resource utilization. 

Monitoring Features / Code-level diagnostics:Unified operational view with dashboards: allow user to create re-usable graphs and visualize cloud resources and applications in a unified view. They can graph metrics and logs data side by side in a single dashboard to quickly get the context and go from diagnosing the problem to understanding the root cause. 

Cost: Offers a free and paid tier. Paid includes a calculator to estimate price. 

So, which APM tool came out on top for your organization? 

Curious to know more about how APM fits into a comprehensive performance engineering strategy? Check out our last blog, Continuous Performance Testing and Application Performance Management, A Performance Engineering Love Story.

Need a partner to handle APM in your organization? 




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