For a long time now, Transloadit has had a system in place to decide which encoding jobs are handled first. Since it costs a lot less time and resources to spawn a job than to actually process it, we regularly need to scale up machines in order to handle whatever our end users are throwing at us.
This process takes only a few minutes and we feel that such a delay is perfectly alright when you are transcoding 10 terabyte. However, when you are simply resizing an avatar, this is of course unacceptable.
To solve this problem, Transloadit has allowed a few simultaneous jobs per Account and client IP (the "live queue"), before they trickle down into the "batch queue".
You could see this system as a highway that has a fast lane as well as a lane dedicated to slow moving traffic. Any trucks in the slow lane will not be holding up the cars in the fast lane and everybody is happier as a result.
However, in order to keep this fast lane fast, we couldn't rely on scaling anymore and we needed to reserve capacity to handle any sudden bursts. Sadly, this reserved capacity has been eating through our cloud budget at times when it wasn't fully utilized. Keeping the fast lane fast can be costly business.
Furthermore, in order to protect our customers from each other, each account has had a corresponding limit, which determines the extent to which it may occupy the "live queue" before its jobs are moved into the batch queue. More explanation about these queues and limits can be found here.
We have worked like this for years now, but today we are exposing this metric in our pricing model. If you are an existing customer, you have nothing to fear from this: everybody already using our services is being "grandfathered in", so we are not changing how Transloadit currently works for you.
For new subscribers, however, plans will now come with an associated "reserved workers", which we can use to calculate how many machines we need to keep on stand-by at any time.
This also means that if you have a use case that requires big bursts of fast lane traffic, it will now be possible to handle that smoothly with our higher priced or custom plans.
In addition to this, we have also changed the Enterprise plan to now allow for customization by default.
Concluding, this new pricing model gives our customers more control over available capacity, while it also allows us to plan ahead, and invest in machines able to handle any burst. We hope you like it!