Okta® vs Auth0® – Which is Better? – JumpCloud

Written by Zach DeMeyer on July 27, 2019

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Okta® and Auth0®: two juggernaut names of the identity and access management (IAM) industry. For a while, the two occupied similar, yet adjacent parts of the market, existing together in a semblance of harmony. As both companies have grown, Okta becoming one of the hottest publicly-traded stocks and Auth0 reaching $1B+ in valuation, each vendor has expanded their offerings into the other’s space. Tensions have risen, and what was once Okta and Auth0 has turned into Okta vs. Auth0 with the two butting heads over their shared space. So, what does this rivalry look like today?

A Shared Space, A Shared Battle

From the get go, Okta has aimed to become the top single sign-on (SSO) platform for web applications, which has also been called the Identity-as-a-Service (IDaaS) space by industry analysts. Indeed, Okta is the most popular of these IDaaS/SSO solutions, creating a process by which IT admins can connect their on-prem identities to cloud resources. A core part of that process was to enable web developers to leverage the SAML protocol, which they did through libraries and kits. Of course, developers started asking for more capabilities, including the capability to be the user management backend for their application. Okta then acquired a company called StormPath to do this.

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Auth0, on the other hand, had already made their name by providing backend user management for applications and was growing quickly. As such, Auth0 had built out a variety of integrations to help manage the process of onboarding end users to an application and managing their user identity in that application. This change was highly valuable for developers using Auth0, because once the integration was complete, an organization would rarely have to switch out their user directory for that application.

And so, as the circles of the two companies crossed, the resulting overlap created a Venn diagram of competition. Their fierce rivalry continues to this day, Okta vs. Auth0, each striving to dominate the application identity space. While their feud has certainly lit up the IAM space, IT admins have noticed that, while both solutions are good in their own right, neither can paint a full IAM picture in an organization.

The Bigger Picture

You see, an organization’s internal identities are generally housed in a directory service. This core user directory store has often lived on-prem with solutions like Microsoft® Active Directory®. The recent shift of IT to the cloud was the impetus for cloud solutions like Okta and Auth0 to act as a bridge between on-prem identities and cloud resources. Active Directory (AD) is still one of the long-regarded mainstays of IAM in IT, so the thought of replacing it has been out of the question for most IAM vendors, Okta and Auth0 included.

Because of AD’s dominance, neither company has focused on filling the niche of the core directory for an organization. Despite this, many IT admins have been looking at IAM holistically, wondering why they need an on-prem directory service like AD when the majority of today’s IT resources are in the cloud. And, with the rise of non-Windows® system usage (i.e Macs® and Linux®), AD is seemingly unfit for modern IT identity operations.

A Cloud Directory Service for the Modern Era

Clearly, a cloud directory service would help IT admins solve their problem of disparate identities. Ideally, instead of leveraging a clutch of various solutions to manage identities and control their access, a single solution could shoulder all of the burden. This would create a centralized identity that could be leveraged across both cloud and on-prem IT resources, and would treat all vendors and service providers as first-class citizens.

Thankfully, JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service® has entered the IAM ecosystem, filling this niche as the first cloud directory service. JumpCloud has reimagined AD for the modern era, enabling IT admins to manage their users and federate access to virtually all of their IT resources from a single cloud-based console.

With JumpCloud, IT admins can completely forego AD to provide centralized IAM to their organizations with a single platform. JumpCloud gives end users the ability to leverage a single set of credentials to access all of their resources, or One Identity to Rule Them All®

Try JumpCloud Free

While the Okta vs. Auth0 battle is interesting, there is another part of the IAM space that is quite interesting: the cloud directory service. Why not give JumpCloud a try? Signing up for a JumpCloud account is completely free, with ten complimentary users in the full platform that you can use forever. You can also see the product in action by scheduling a live demo with us. Please contact us if you would like to learn more.

Zach DeMeyer

Zach is a Product Marketing Specialist at JumpCloud with a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Colorado School of Mines. He loves being on the cutting edge of new technology, and when he's not working, he enjoys all things outdoors, music, and soccer.

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