Reply by kawsper to your comment highlights several drawbacks of Linode. Specifically this feedback "Your API is a mess, and so is your documentation. Everything is GET-requests. And creating a new instance, shouldn't take 11 requests" alone, if true, is sufficient for me to not consider Linode for hosting. As being in an ultra small team of 2, we can't afford the luxury of API requests failing so many times.
Having used AWS since 2010, and since 2007 for backups(s3), I can say that your comparison $20,000 in AWS vs $250 is wrong. Have you assumed a very foolish selection by a user? Where in a user will just pick up all their services (e.g. RDS for a DB, etc.)
Just as a fact, we don't use RDS but install MySql by ourselves as it allows us to have other things on that instance, and also comes out cheap in comparison. On this note my contribution to the OP (article) would have been bundle different services on an instance, rather than buying stereotyped instances. Of course YMMV.
The biggest advantage is for ultra small teams, where you have comfort of a stable environment, with respect to instances launching; APIs working; volumes getting attached/unattached; snapshots getting taken; backups done on s3. All taking place automatically, while you rest peacefully.
I am not arguing that apples to apples Linode (or some other service) will not be cheaper than AWS. I am sure it will be. But still many people would like to stick with AWS because of stability and maturity of its cloud.
Also you got to give credit to AWS for pioneering hourly billing, and disrupting the cloud environment. Despite agreeing with you mainly on the cheaper point, when I moved to AWS from dedicated hosting in 2010, my monthly bills reduced.
Lastly. The experimentation. The wide variety of instances it has from micro (to the recently launched nano) to ultra large instances, allow you to experiment a lot. For example: in the past few months: I moved from couple m3.large to couple c4.xlarge, while experimenting in between on c3.xlarge type of instances.
Finally, when you make such a blanket statement, you not only demonstrate your naivete but also undermine the decisions of thousands of satisfied AWS users.
All said, I would like you (Linode) and others to be a good alternative. I am glad you are there. This is to keep AWS on its toes. Which is in my interest as their customer.
PS: Lest my handle makes someone think, I represent AWS. Please be assured I do not. I just created this handle, when I had to ask an AWS specific question (you can check my first post in this handle). And then continued with it for other things.
Edit: minor correction