Neo4j vs. AWS Neptune

I have someone trying to convince me that we should switch from Neo4j to AWS Neptune instead. Other than we all know that Neo4j is superior, can anyone provide me with specific talking points to bring up that would support us staying on Neo4j?

Something from the other-side that they're arguing is that "it's AWS it has to be good" and "AWS claims it's fast, so it must be" and it's a managed service so we don't need to manage an EC2 instance or storage or anything.

One thing that I find important is the cypher syntax. Due to how cypher is structured, I think that it can be easier to communicate between all the different parties involved in projects. The cypher syntax is a great way to communicate between conceptual to technical possibly making it easier for people to understand what is going within the graph itself.

The more people understand the better the information can be shared and built upon. The cypher syntax was by far one of the top reasons I ended up going with Neo4j over other options.

In that same vein, you have products like Bloom with too provide good ways for other "non-technical/developer" individuals to interact with data.

It isn't just about being (insert fancy words and lingo), but about being approachable by all those who are interested and/or affected by the data.


We recently evaluated both Neptune and Neo4j before deciding to go with Neo4j.

I second Michael's endorsement of Cypher over Gremlin (Neptune's property graph query language). I find Cypher much easier to work with.

Neo4js libraries APOC and GraphAlgorithms allow you to do things in one call that I struggled to do in a full weekend of code writing on Neptune.

If you go with Neptune, you are locked in to AWS. With Neo4j, you can move on prem or switch cloud providers when you want to.

There are many more books, resources, and tutorials on Neo4j than there are Neptune. I attended the Re:Invent conference, and there were very few sessions that went into any depth on Neptune. Graph doesn't seem like a high priority for AWS.

If you are an AWS customer, it's very easy to spin up a Neo4j AMI on EC2. It's faster than starting a Neptune cluster on AWS.