Posts Tagged

services

Hey, Siri, what’s the future of enterprise voice services?

Apple’s focus on privacy is incredibly important when it comes to the development of Siri and voice services, as the potential goes way beyond asking your Apple Watch to turn off your lights.

Silent whisper

If you use HomePod, you already know that Siri will respond to commands only slightly louder than a whisper.

You can use it to carry out tasks, control home automation equipment, media playback controls, answer questions, and more. Apple’s AI teams are constantly developing ways to get Siri to do more.

Even then, it’s the thin end of the wedge.

I’ve explained before that Apple, Google, and Amazon all keep recordings of your voice interactions with their smart speakers.

I’ve also explained the fundamental differences in their approaches that make Siri the most secure voice assistant to use:

  1. Siri’s recordings cannot be traced back to you, as Apple does not link them to your account. Both Google and Amazon keep those recordings associated with your account.
  2. Apple deletes those recordings after a set period of time, while Google and Amazon do not (that’s my understanding).

A recent Washington Post story (summarized here) explained the dangers of these warrantless recordings. It’s why I’d never recommend transacting a business deal in the same room as any non-Apple voice device – even though around 50 million people probably do. What you say, the conversations you have, have value.

Unlocking the value of voice

Voice assistant services aren’t just about what happens at home.

Enterprises know the value of the voice – and they don’t even need to analyze what you are discussing in order to unlock that value.

If you’ve ever spoken with an automated customer support chatbot, you understand how voice provides value, in this case in terms of the provision of personalized services. Apple’s Business Chat service is its solution to support these machines.

It’s also important to consider how the nature of voice itself is changing now that conversation is digitized. This voice data can be far more easily analyzed. Data analytics of voice communications is real, and it is happening.

In a sense, it already takes place each time you speak with Siri, which (while mostly reliant on pattern matching) also boasts an increasingly accurate AI capable of figuring out contextual information to boost recognition of what is said.

So, now you have voice assistants that are capable of understanding what is said, figuring out the context around which an utterance is made, and matching patterns and analyzing the content of millions of conversations concurrently in real time.

What could the enterprise value of these systems be?

Hey, Sir, what’s RPA?”

There’s a way to go before you see voice widely used as a component in systems for business or workflow analytics or robotic process management – but there are already signs of the incoming change.

Think about voice as biometric ID.

Banks already use voice recognition biometrics as part of their fraud control systems — HSBC’s VoiceID has prevented $400 million value of fraudulent transactions.

Think also about how voice assistant technologies can act as some form of digital twin for real human chat.

Perhaps you are involved in a group discussion on some matter. Ordinarily, people take notes during the meeting. These days we see document sharing systems that work around enterprise collaboration suites, some even provide on-the-spot automated transcription. Voice assistants add automatic detection of key dates, future meetings, targets, and project outcomes – similar to the way iOS may spot a meeting date and time in an email. 

Similar technologies applied against customer service calls may identify similar trends:

  • Do particular product or service fault call requests tend to take place at particular times of day?
  • Automated systems may pick up signs (such as an unusually high number of customer support requests) that warn of a product or batch flaw. 

Mining the data

Back in the call center, data analytics of voice communications should yield useful insights around performance (was the resolution satisfactory?) to follow up to enabling and empowering support for personalized services: If a customer rings twice, can such systems flag what their previous request was and provide call center operatives with the current resolution status of the matter?

Properly mined, voice data analysis may also yield early insights around service faults, and at least one big telecommunications company plans to mine voice data in order to provide business analytics solutions based on voice for enterprise customers.

Underpinning all these transactions sits a need for privacy.

Indeed, Apple CEO Tim Cook’s demand for a bill of digital rights in which customers can control and manage all the different slices of their digital data held by third-party entities seems an appropriate response as enterprises large and small inevitably explore how to use this data for their own ends.

How many times a day does your smart lighting system send usage information back to its manufacturer? And what do they do with this data once they own it?

Learn more about voice services in the enterprise and share your thoughts: Join the @IDGTECHtalk Twitter chat on Thursday, May 9, using the hashtag #IDGTECHtalk

Please follow me on Twitter, or join me in the AppleHolic’s bar & grill and Apple Discussions groups on MeWe.





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Hey Siri, what’s the future of enterprise voice services?

Apple’s focus on privacy is incredibly important when it comes to the development of Siri and voice services, as the potential goes way beyond asking your Apple Watch to turn off your lights.

Silent whisper

If you use HomePod you’ll already know that Siri will respond to commands only slightly louder than a whisper.

You can use it to carry out tasks, control home automation equipment, media playback controls, to answer questions and more. Apple’s AI teams are constantly developing ways to get Siri to do more.

Even then, it’s the thin end of the wedge.

I’ve explained before that Apple, Google and Amazon all keep recordings of your voice interactions with their smart speakers.

I’ve also explained the fundamental differences in their approach that make Siri the most secure voice assistant to use:

  1. Siri’s recordings cannot be traced back to you as Apple does not link them to your account. Both Google and Amazon keep those recordings associated with your account.
  2. Apple deletes those recordings after a set period of time, while Google and Amazon do not, (that’s my understanding).

A recent Washington Poststory (summarized here) explained the dangers of these warrantless recordings. It’s why I’d never recommend transacting a business deal in the same room as any non-Apple voice device – even though around 50 million people probably do. What you say, the conversations you have, have value.

Unlocking the value of voice

Voice assistant services aren’t just about what happens at home.

Enterprises know the value of the voice – and they don’t even need to analyse what you are discussing in order to unlock that value.

If you’ve ever spoken with an automated customer support chatbot then you’ll see how voice provides value, in this case in terms of the provision of personalized services. Apple’s Business Chat service is its solution to support these machines.

It’s also important to consider how the nature of voice itself is changing now that conversation is digitized. This voice data can be far more easily analysed. Data analytics of voice communications is real and it is happening.

In a sense, it already takes place each time you speak with Siri, which while mostly reliant on pattern matching also boasts an increasingly accurate AI capable of figuring out contextual information to boost recognition of what is said.

So now you have voice assistants that are capable of understanding what is said, of figuring out the context around which an utterance is made, and of pattern matching and analysing the content of millions of conversations concurrently in real time.

What could the enterprise value of these systems be?

Hey Sir, what’s RPA?”

There’s a way to go before you see voice widely used as a component in systems for business or workflow analytics or robotic process management – but there are already signs of the incoming change.

Think about voice as biometric ID.

Banks already use voice recognition biometrics as part of their fraud control systems — HSBC’s VoiceID has prevented $400 million value of fraudulent transactions.

Think also on how voice assistant technologies can act as some form of digital twin for real human chat.

Perhaps you are involved in a group discussion on some matter. Ordinarily, people take notes during the meeting.

These days we see document sharing systems that work around enterprise collaboration suites, some even provide on the spot automated transcription. Voice assistants add automatic detection of key dates, future meetings, targets and project outcomes – similar to the way iOS may spot a meeting date and time in an email. 

Similar technologies applied against customer service calls may identify similar trends:

  • Do particular product or service fault call requests tend to take place at particular times of day?
  • Automated systems may pick up signs (such as an unusually high number of customer support requests) that warn of a product or batch flaw. 

Mining the data

Back in the call center, data analytics of voice communications should yield useful insights, around performance (was the resolution satisfactory?) to follow up to enabling and empowering support for personalized services: If a customer rings twice, can such systems flag what their previous request was provide call center operatives with the current resolution status of the matter?

Properly mined, voice data analysis may also yield early insights around service faults, and at least one big telecoms company plans to mine voice data in order to provide business analytics solutions based on voice for enterprise customers.

Underpinning all these transactions sits a need for privacy.

Indeed, Apple CEO Tim Cook’s demand for a bill of digital rights in which customers can control and manage all the different slices of their digital data held by third party entities seems an appropriate response as enterprises large and small inevitably explore how to use this data for their own ends.

How many times a day does your smart lighting system send usage information back to its manufacturer? And what do they do with this data once they own it?

Please follow me on Twitter, or join me in the AppleHolic’s bar & grill and Apple Discussions groups on MeWe.





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The Best Free Website Hosting Services in 2019

Need to create your own website? It’s easier than you’d think, especially nowadays with all the awesome services and platforms out there—not to mention all the free web hosts you can pick from.

Keep reading to be pointed toward the best free web hosts and most popular free web hosting services currently available.

Is Free Website Hosting Enough for Your Needs?

Before you waste any time with free web hosting services, you need to ask yourself whether free website hosting will suffice. Truth is, while free web hosting is fine for getting your site off the ground, it’s often more headache than it’s worth.

Here are a few reasons to reconsider free web hosting:

Extremely limited resources. You’ll be lucky to get more than 1 GB of storage space. Most free web hosts only offer a few hundred MB. Given the size of images, videos, and web software these days, you’ll run out faster than you think—especially if you’re publishing a blog with frequent new content. And don’t be duped by “unmetered” storage and bandwidth, which come with performance problems (read below).

Poor site performance and uptime. Free web hosts are in high demand with limited server space. This means tons of websites are crammed onto the same hardware and share bandwidth, RAM, and CPU. Best case, your site is slow as snails. Worst case, someone else’s website causes your server to crash and your site goes down.

Poor ranking in search results. Search engines often give greater weight to sites hosted by reputable hosts, as they’re more likely to have reputable content. Moreover, search engines penalize rankings for sites with poor performance, which isn’t good given what we talked about above.

You can’t monetize. Many free web hosts forbid the use of advertisements and affiliate links. Some even go as far as injecting ads onto your site, so they make money off of your work.

Your site isn’t really your site. Per the terms and conditions of most free web hosts, your site—and possibly the content of your site—could actually be the property of the host. This means they can take your site down at any time for any reason, and if you ever want to sell your site, you won’t have the rights to do so.

That’s why we highly recommend paid web hosting. Even cheap website hosting is better than free website hosting! Whatever you can afford, go for it.

What do we recommend? WP Engine if you’re running a WordPress site, because it takes the hassle out of site administration. We use WP Engine to run our own sister sites, and we couldn’t be happier.

Other solid web hosting options include InMotion Hosting, Bluehost, and Hostinger. All of these web hosting services offer discounted plans if you sign up using these links.

Still set on going with free? Here are the best free website hosting services.

The Best Free Website Hosting Services in 2019 free web host x10hosting

With over 10 years of solid service, x10Hosting is one of the oldest and most reputable free web hosts around. Signup is fast, the specs are great, and you’ll have access to 200+ one-click installers that’ll get your website up and running in record time.

  • Storage: Unmetered
  • Bandwidth: Unmetered
  • Advertisements: None
  • Domains: 2 subdomains, 2 addon domains, 1 parked domain
  • Email Accounts: 3 email accounts
  • Upload Methods: FTP
  • Scripting Support: PHP
  • Database Support: MySQL
  • Control Panel: cPanel

Performance is excellent for a free host, and if your site takes off, you can always upgrade to a paid plan for as little as $4/mo through x10Premium (more advanced VPS plans are also available for as little as $9/mo).

The Best Free Website Hosting Services in 2019 free web host byethost

Byethost owns one of the most powerful networks among free web hosting services. Thanks to their successful premium services, Byethost can provide top-notch free services with no gimmicks or catches.

  • Storage: Unmetered
  • Bandwidth: Unmetered
  • Advertisements: None
  • Domains: Unlimited addon domains and parked domains
  • Email Accounts: 5 email accounts
  • Upload Methods: FTP
  • Scripting Support: PHP
  • Database Support: MySQL
  • Control Panel: VistaPanel

Not only do you get support through the free community forums, but Byethost offers 24/7 tech support even for free users. Don’t expect lightning-fast response times, but if you’re an absolute newbie, every ounce of help can prove crucial.

The Best Free Website Hosting Services in 2019 free web host 5gbfree

5GBFree offers exactly what it promises. It’s a newer service so it’s unclear how much longer they can keep this up, but they’ve been around long enough that we feel more than comfortable enough to recommend them. As far as value, 5GBFree is one of the best.

  • Storage: 5 GB
  • Bandwidth: 20 GB/mo
  • Advertisements: None
  • Domains: None
  • Email Accounts: None
  • Upload Methods: FTP
  • Scripting Support: PHP
  • Database Support: MySQL
  • Control Panel: cPanel

Note that 5GBFree used to force ads on freely hosted sites, but they discontinued that in 2014. If you used to use them but stopped because of this, reconsider and try them again. You may be pleasantly surprised.

The Best Free Website Hosting Services in 2019 free web host awardspace

AwardSpace launched back in 2003, so rest assured: they’ve been around for a while, and they’ll still around years from now. The free service is meant to funnel you to their paid services, but for most users, the free service is more than enough.

  • Storage: 1 GB
  • Bandwidth: 5 GB/mo
  • Advertisements: None
  • Domains: 1 free domain, 3 subdomains
  • Email Accounts: 1 email account
  • Upload Methods: FTP
  • Scripting Support: PHP
  • Database Support: MySQL
  • Control Panel: Custom

Even as a free user, you can take advantage of their excellent 24/7 customer support. Obviously paid users are prioritized, but considering you’re paying nothing, that’s more than fair.

The Best Free Website Hosting Services in 2019 free web host webfreehosting

Despite its as-generic-as-possible name, WebFreeHosting is a choice for first timers on the web. The specs are great, and you have a simple (and affordable) upgrade path if your site takes off. Support phone numbers are available in US, UK, and Germany.

  • Storage: 1 GB
  • Bandwidth: 5 GB/mo
  • Advertisements: None
  • Domains: 3 subdomains
  • Email Accounts: 1 email account
  • Upload Methods: FTP
  • Scripting Support: PHP, Perl
  • Database Support: MySQL
  • Control Panel: Custom

One thing that stands out is WebFreeHosting’s eco-friendliness. Their servers are completely powered by wind energy, which should set your mind at ease if you’re worried about your own carbon footprint.

The Best Free Website Hosting Services in 2019 free web host 000webhost

000Webhost is an oft-recommended name on free web hosting lists, and rightfully so. They pack a bunch of features into the free plan, and there are no hidden costs, gimmicks, or catches. They also have over a decade of experience, so you can breathe easy knowing they won’t fold overnight.

  • Storage: 1 GB
  • Bandwidth: 10 GB/mo
  • Advertisements: None
  • Domains: 1 subdomain
  • Email Accounts: None
  • Upload Methods: FTP
  • Scripting Support: PHP
  • Database Support: MySQL
  • Control Panel: cPanel

Despite the great specs, we do caution against using 000Webhost because they were hacked in 2015, leading to leaked usernames, passwords, email addresses, and personal names. However, if you take the proper precautions, you can mitigate such risks.

The Best Free Website Hosting Services in 2019 free web host area

Launched in 2005 as FreeWHA, here’s another service that’s been around the block quite a bit. They’ve proven that they can sustain their service for many years. The website itself looks dated, but don’t let that deter you—at the end of the day, the service quality is all that matters.

  • Storage: 1.5 GB
  • Bandwidth: Unmetered
  • Advertisements: None (see note below)
  • Domains: 1 subdomain, free domain transfer
  • Email Accounts: None
  • Upload Methods: FTP
  • Scripting Support: PHP
  • Database Support: MySQL
  • Control Panel: Custom

One nice thing about Free Web Hosting Area is that they provide free daily/weekly backups to an external source, which is usually a feature you need to pay for. Accounts never expire as long as you receive at least 1 visitor every month.

Free Web Hosting Area promises that “low traffic” sites won’t ever have forced ads. Once your traffic crosses an undisclosed threshold, you will see ads. You can get rid of them by upgrading to the very cheap $12/year plan.

When Free Web Hosting Isn’t Enough

If you want to host a simple site that doesn’t change very often, there may be a better alternative for you: static site generators. With a static site, you can take advantage of unlimited free web hosting services like GitHub Pages and Netlify Drop.

Whatever you do, bear in mind that all free web hosts have limits and restrictions and downsides. If you have any budget at all, we highly recommend a paid web host. The pitfalls of free web hosting aren’t worth the headache except for the most basic of sites.

WP Engine is the way to go if you’re running a WordPress site. Otherwise, InMotion Hosting, Bluehost, and Hostinger are all good for reputable web hosts that are affordable. Remember to use these links to unlock discounted plans!

Image credit: maxkabakov/Depositphotos

Explore more about: Blogging, Web Development, Web Hosting.



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The Best Web Hosting Services: Shared, VPS, and Dedicated

Are you looking for the best web hosting services? Whether you need to host a small personal blog or a major corporate website, this article will help you identify the best web hosts to use.

Finding the best web hosting service isn’t as straightforward as searching Google and going with the one that offers the lowest price. There are a lot of issues to consider, including the reasons why you need hosting and how you intend to use it.

Here’s what you need to consider when choosing the right host for your needs, along with several recommendations of the best and most reputable web hosting services.

In this article, we’ll look at some of the following web hosts:

What Do You Need in a Web Host?

Before choosing your web host, you’ll need to think about your requirements. Consider the following concerns and decide the importance of each item according to what kind of site you’re putting up:

  • Speed: How responsive do you need your site to be? It may not matter if your personal site takes a few seconds to load, but if you want to run an e-commerce hub, those few seconds can turn away potential customers.
  • Bandwidth: How much data will be transferred every month? This is tied to how many visitors you expect to have on your website at any given time and how many bandwidth-intensive elements you’ll have (e.g. images, videos, file downloads require much more bandwidth than simple text).
  • Storage Space: How many pages are on your website? And more importantly, how many images, videos, and documents will reside on your server? You should first consider whether you could use free image hosting services. If you can’t, consider efficiently resizing your images


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    to minimize storage concerns.
  • Technical Support: How tech-savvy are you? Is this your first website ever? Do you have trouble figuring out how to make changes to your site? Or do you only need help when the server is down? The more support you need, the more it’ll cost you.

Once you have a clear picture of your needs, you can work your way through the following list and identify which web hosting service is best for you.

The Best Shared Web Hosting Services

When multiple websites are hosted on a single physical server it is called shared web hosting. These plans are ideal for personal blogs or small websites where storage space and low monthly costs are more important than bandwidth and performance.

InMotion Hosting

best web shared vps dedicated hosting services

InMotion Hosting is mentioned under every hosting category listed in this article, and for good reason: InMotion offers excellent value plans for all types of hosting needs.

You’ll find the standard shared web hosting offerings, such as unlimited disk space and monthly bandwidth, plus a complimentary domain, data backups, and website transfers. You also get access to cPanel loaded with tools and apps that help you maintain your site.

MakeUseOf readers can get the Launch plan at a special discount of only $3.99/mo (normally $6.39/mo). For more performance, you might consider the Power plan at $5.99/mo (normally $8.49/mo), which allows up to 6 websites on one account, unlimited disk space, and up to 100 subdomains. The Pro plan at $13.99/mo (normally $14.71/mo) offers all that plus unlimited MySQL databases and unlimited websites on one server.

TRY OUR #1 RANKED HOSTING SERVICE: Get up to 50% OFF InMotion Hosting

Bluehost

best web shared vps dedicated hosting services

Want reliable web hosting at rock-bottom cost? Bluehost’s Basic plan gets you 50GB of storage for your site, 5 email accounts with 100MB storage each, and up to 25 subdomains. The Plus plan allows for unlimited websites, unmetered storage, unlimited email accounts, and unlimited domains.

Like most web hosts, Bluehost offers cPanel for management, a simple site deployment feature, and e-commerce support (shared SSL, shopping carts, etc.).

Normally the Basic plan would cost you $3.95/mo for the first year, but MakeUseOf readers can get a special discounted price of $2.95/mo. Similarly, the Plus plan’s normal price of $5.95/mo drops down to $5.45/mo. Get the special discount for these Bluehost plans by using this link.

We’ve compared Bluehost and HostGator


Bluehost vs. HostGator: Which Web Hosting Service Is Best for You?




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if you’re interested in the differences.

Media Temple

best web shared vps dedicated hosting services

Media Temple promises to alleviate short-term traffic-spike concerns with its service. It’s much more expensive, but the peace of mind it offers can’t be understated.

The service has its own control panel (not cPanel), so this may not be ideal for seasoned users who are used to cPanel. But for anyone who is new to web hosting, it’s easy to understand and simple to use.

Starting at $20/mo for the Personal plan, you get 20GB of SSD storage, 1TB of bandwidth that conveniently scales for short-term spikes, up to 100 websites, and comes pre-installed with the software you need to run highly-functional websites, including PHP, Perl, and Python. It comes with CloudFlare, one-click app installations, and better overall hardware.

SiteGround

best web shared vps dedicated hosting services

SiteGround is a solid option if you don’t have much web hosting experience. Start off with the StartUp plan at $3.95/mo to get 10GB of storage and enough bandwidth to handle up to 10,000 visitors a month. You get a free domain name, unlimited emails, cPanel and SSH access, and even CloudFlare support.

If you’re getting around 25,000 visits a month, you can get the GrowBig plan which starts at $5.95/mo for 20GB storage. This includes one free year of SSL certificate, better speed with SuperCacher, and “priority” technical support.

If your site is booming with 100,000 visits a month, the GoGeek plan is available for $11.95/mo. This includes 30GB of space, all the features of the other plans, plus “geeky advanced features” like fewer accounts sharing your server and more advanced hardware for better performance.

Namecheap

best web shared vps dedicated hosting services

Namecheap is one of the best options for first-timers who want to test the waters of web hosting. The Stellar plan starts at an unbeatable price of $2.88/mo.

For that price, you get 20GB of HDD storage, unlimited bandwidth, up to 3 domains and 50 subdomains, cPanel for management, 50 email accounts, support for CloudFlare, and all kinds of other additional software.

When you need to expand, you can upgrade to the Stellar Plus plan for $4.88/mo (unmetered HDD storage and unlimited websites) or the Stellar Business plan for $8.88/mo (50GB of SSD storage).

Not to mention the fact that Namecheap’s support is matchless among budget-level web hosts. And the performance is excellent for what you pay—much better than some web hosts that cost twice as much. It’s why we consider Namecheap to be one of the best cheap web hosting providers


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.

Hostinger

Hostinger's web hosting plans

Hostinger may be lesser known than the other options on this list, but as we noted in our review of Hostinger, you get a number of extra features that usually aren’t included in affordable web hosting plans.

For example, the automated weekly backups can be a lifesaver if something ever goes wrong with your site. Hostinger also offers domain parking, SSH access, support for up to 100 subdomains, their own in-house hPanel for configuration (very similar to cPanel), DNS management tools, and of course, FTP access.

The Single plan starts at $8/mo, which is good for one website, one email account, 10GB of SSD storage, 100GB of monthly bandwidth, and 1 MySQL database.

The Premium plan is available for $12/mo, which is good for unlimited websites, unlimited email accounts, 20 GB of SSD storage, unlimited monthly bandwidth, and unlimited MySQL databases.

The Business plan is available for $16/mo and is essentially the Premium plan plus daily backups (rather than weekly backups), more computing resources for faster performance, and a free SSL certificate so you can protect your site with HTTPS.

MakeUseOf readers can get discounted hosting plans at Hostinger by signing up using this link!

The Best Virtual Private Server Hosting

When your site starts to get a lot more traffic—we’re talking over 10,000 visits per day—it’s time to move beyond shared hosting to the next step up, which is a virtual private server.

With a VPS, you basically have an entire virtual server to yourself. It isn’t shared with other customers so you get full access to all the CPU and RAM allotted to you, and you get full control of the server so you can install all kinds of third-party software and restart the server whenever you want.

Note: These are managed VPS plans, meaning that the hosting provider’s administrators “manage” the server for you (e.g. regular updates, data backups, reboot crashes, fix issues) so you don’t have to worry. Unmanaged plans are much cheaper but we don’t recommend them because they’re riskier and require a lot more technical know-how.

WP Engine

The Best Web Hosting Services: Shared, VPS, and Dedicated best wordpress hosting wpengine

If the only reason you need web hosting is to run a WordPress site, then we highly recommend WP Engine. As a managed WordPress host, you’re essentially getting all the benefits of a virtualized WordPress instance without the hassles of setting up or administrating the server.

The Startup plan starts at $35/mo and offers 10GB storage, 50GB monthly bandwidth, and up to 25,000 monthly visits. The Growth plan costs $115/mo and the Scale plan costs $290/mo, which may seem excessive but remember that WP Engine handles everything for you and comes with awesome perks like automated daily backups, built-in caching, global CDN, staging sites, free SSL certificates, and more.

MakeUseOf readers can get 20% off your first payment if you sign up for WP Engine using this link. It’s really good, and we know because we use WP Engine to run our sister sites.

InMotion Hosting

best web shared vps dedicated hosting services

Never to be outdone, InMotion Hosting offers SSDs as part of their VPS hosting. There aren’t quite as many customized choices here as you might find with other VPS providers—only three VPS plans—but what you do get is impressive. Uptime is excellent, and response times with tech support are lightning fast.

The VPS-1000HA-S plan offers an impressive 75GB of storage space, 4GB of RAM, and 4TB of bandwidth for $29.19/mo. The VPS-2000HA-S plan bumps it up to 150GB of storage space, 6GB of RAM, and 5TB of bandwidth for $47.39/mo. And the top VPS-3000HA-S plan gives a whopping 260GB of storage space, 8GB of RAM, and 6TB of bandwidth for $69.34/mo.

MakeUseOf readers can get the following special discounted rates: $27.99/mo for the VPS-1000HA-S plan, $44.99/mo for the VPS-2000HA-S plan, and $64.99/mo for the VPS-3000HA-S plan. Get the special discount for these InMotion Hosting plans by using this link.

Media Temple

best web shared vps dedicated hosting services

Media Temple offers users the option to go with an unmanaged Linux-based VPS for $30/mo or managed VPS solutions ranging from $55/mo to $1,500/mo.

Whether you choose managed or unmanaged, you can then pick between six levels of hosting that offer an array of features. Level 1 is the base $55/mo plan with 30GB of storage, 2GB of RAM, and 2TB of bandwidth. The most popular option is Level 3 with 100GB of storage, 8GB of RAM, and 5TB of bandwidth for $150/mo.

The cost may seem prohibitive, but Media Temple is up-front about their prices: the price you sign up with today will be the same price when you renew the following year. No surprises.

DigitalOcean

best web shared vps dedicated hosting services

We praised DigitalOcean as the best unmanaged VPS host for newbies several years ago and we still stand by that today. It’s newbie-friendly for three reasons: excellent support, a massive knowledgebase of helpful articles, and a pay-as-you-use model that’s extremely affordable.

It also comes with a bunch of apps that you can one-click install, including LAMP, WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, and MediaWiki. The only downside is that you’ll want to learn Linux to make full use of DigitalOcean’s flexibility.

The cheapest plan is only $5/mo and grants 25GB of storage, 1GB of RAM, and 1TB of bandwidth. You won’t find many VPS hosts at that price, and the ones you do find won’t be very good. You can also scale up to 3840GB of storage, 192GB of RAM, and 12TB of bandwidth for $960/mo. In other words, lots of room to grow.

You can also turn your server on-and-off at will, which allows you to take advantage of hourly pricing instead of monthly pricing. If you turn your server off for two weeks, for example, you’d only pay for half of the month.

Note: DigitalOcean only offers unmanaged VPS hosting. Unless you have a background or interest in Linux, you may prefer to pay more for a managed VPS.

Linode

best web shared vps dedicated hosting services

Linode is a cloud-based hosting solution that not only lets you immediately deploy a customized Linux VPS in under a minute, but lets you geographically position that server anywhere in the world.

It’s a unique service meant for people who love using Linux, complete with your choice of distributions like Ubuntu, CentOS, openSUSE, and more. You get kernel and root access, a dedicated IP address, easy configuration and disk cloning, two-factor authentication, and other cool features you’re sure to love if you’re a Linux user.

Plans range from $5/mo for the low-end plan (25GB of storage, 1GB of RAM, and 1TB of bandwidth) all the way up to $960/mo for the top plan (3840GB of storage, 192GB of RAM, and 20TB of bandwidth). High RAM plans also exist, with the most expensive being $960/mo for 340GB of storage, 300GB of RAM, and 9TB of bandwidth.

Note: Linode only offers unmanaged VPS hosting. Unless you have a background or interest in Linux, you may prefer to pay more for a managed VPS.

The Best Dedicated Server Hosting

So, you’re getting so much traffic that even VPS hosting isn’t enough to keep your site up? Fear not. That just means you’ve outgrown the VPS tier of web hosting and it’s time to move into the big leagues with dedicated server hosting.

What is a dedicated web hosting plan? Your website is hosted on a private server that’s fully dedicated to your website. No other website shares your machine, not even as a virtual machine. You get all of the CPU, RAM, and system resources.

Of course, this usually comes with a hefty price, so dedicated hosting should only be a concern for serious websites that are pulling in millions of pageviews per month.

InMotion Hosting

best web shared vps dedicated hosting services

InMotion Hosting’s Essential dedicated server plan offers 500GB of SSD (or 1TB of HDD) storage, 8GB of RAM, and 6TB of bandwidth, all for a starting price of $105.69/mo. The Advanced server plan is the next step up with 500GB of SSD (or 2TB of HDD) storage, 16GB of RAM, and 10TB of bandwidth starting at $166.59/mo.

But if you have a booming website with a lot of steady traffic, you can go all the way up to the CC-2000 server plan. This gives you 3x1TB of SSD storage, 64GB of RAM, and 15TB of bandwidth starting at $519.49/mo.

Media Temple

best web shared vps dedicated hosting services

Just as with its shared and VPS hosting solutions, Media Temple offers some of the most powerful dedicated server options at an affordable price. All of them come with an impressive 1TB of SSD storage, 128GB of RAM, and 10TB of bandwidth.

Dedicated hosting starts at $2,000/mo for the self-managed plan, $2,500/mo for the managed plan with Plesk or cPanel, and $2,699/mo for the fully managed plan with 24/7 priority response technical support.

SingleHop

best web shared vps dedicated hosting services

If you need flexibility and options, SingleHop is the hosting service you’ll want.

SingleHop’s dedicated server plans start at $179/mo for 2x240GB of SSD storage, 8GB of RAM, and 10TB of bandwidth. Or bump the specs up to 32GB of RAM for $219/mo. Or go even further with 4x1TB of SSD storage and 64GB of RAM for just $300/mo.

If that’s still not enough, you can always schedule a consultation and customize your dedicated server according to your needs. SingleHop boasts 24-hour technical support, your own dedicated account team, and a 90-minute hardware replacement time.

Choosing the Right Hosting Service for You

When a free or very cheap web hosting plan


Top 7 Easy and Free Web Hosting Services




Top 7 Easy and Free Web Hosting Services

Are you looking for a good free web host for your first website? Don’t look beyond these seven top-notch web hosts that have a good reputation.
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just isn’t cutting it anymore, it’s time to upgrade to a paid hosting service. This list should give you a head start toward purchasing the best hosting service that’ll ensure your website serves up the best service for all of your visitors.

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