Amazon EMR vs Snowflake: What are the differences?
Amazon EMR: Distribute your data and processing across a Amazon EC2 instances using Hadoop. Amazon EMR is used in a variety of applications, including log analysis, web indexing, data warehousing, machine learning, financial analysis, scientific simulation, and bioinformatics. Customers launch millions of Amazon EMR clusters every year; Snowflake: The data warehouse built for the cloud. Snowflake eliminates the administration and management demands of traditional data warehouses and big data platforms. Snowflake is a true data warehouse as a service running on Amazon Web Services (AWS)—no infrastructure to manage and no knobs to turn.
Amazon EMR and Snowflake belong to "Big Data as a Service" category of the tech stack.
According to the StackShare community, Amazon EMR has a broader approval, being mentioned in 95 company stacks & 18 developers stacks; compared to Snowflake, which is listed in 29 company stacks and 11 developer stacks.
Cloud Data-warehouse is the centerpiece of modern Data platform. The choice of the most suitable solution is therefore fundamental.
Our benchmark was conducted over BigQuery and Snowflake. These solutions seem to match our goals but they have very different approaches.
BigQuery is notably the only 100% serverless cloud data-warehouse, which requires absolutely NO maintenance: no re-clustering, no compression, no index optimization, no storage management, no performance management. Snowflake requires to set up (paid) reclustering processes, to manage the performance allocated to each profile, etc. We can also mention Redshift, which we have eliminated because this technology requires even more ops operation.
BigQuery can therefore be set up with almost zero cost of human resources. Its on-demand pricing is particularly adapted to small workloads. 0 cost when the solution is not used, only pay for the query you're running. But quickly the use of slots (with monthly or per-minute commitment) will drastically reduce the cost of use. We've reduced by 10 the cost of our nightly batches by using flex slots.
Finally, a major advantage of BigQuery is its almost perfect integration with Google Cloud Platform services: Cloud functions, Dataflow, Data Studio, etc.
BigQuery is still evolving very quickly. The next milestone, BigQuery Omni, will allow to run queries over data stored in an external Cloud platform (Amazon S3 for example). It will be a major breakthrough in the history of cloud data-warehouses. Omni will compensate a weakness of BigQuery: transferring data in near real time from S3 to BQ is not easy today. It was even simpler to implement via Snowflake's Snowpipe solution.
We also plan to use the Machine Learning features built into BigQuery to accelerate our deployment of Data-Science-based projects. An opportunity only offered by the BigQuery solution