I haven’t used the bluehost/learnable deal but I HAVE been a bluehost customer for years now. Well, I switched recently.
The issue I have is that their most recent PHP version if 5.3 (or 5.2 I forget. Think 5.3 though) and that’s far too out of date for me. I want password_hash along with all the other changes 5.6 brought (actually I think 5.5 brought it but 5.6 is hte current version which most hosts offer IIRC).
The PHP being oudated was a dealbreaker for myself (shared hosting). Other than that, no real issues to speak of. Decent customer support, and great service. I have coding requirements though and if they won’t update their servers to keep up-to-date versions, then why should I stay?
I used to be with BlueHost - back then they let you choose between 4, 5.0, 5.1, 5.2, 5.3, and 5.4 (I think - it was a few years ago now). At that time I think 5.0 or 5.1 was the default if you dodn’t change it so if the default is now 5.3 i’d expect them to be offering 5.2 through 5.6.
I know my current host - DreamHost - staggers versions. That is, to allow sites time to upgrade they offer an older version and a newer version. This seems fair to me as it gives sites time to check their code before upgrading before the older version gets dropped.
I presumed other hosts did likewise, but maybe not.
Seems foolish to hold back on offering newer versions just to cater to holdoffs, but I guess that’s their business so what do I know.
I think this is because of catering to hold-backs. i.e. if I was a host and had a large number of hold-backs that didn’t want to refactor their antiquated code, I might decide it to be a wiser business decision to lose the few “cutting edge” sites and keep the others.
I’m not a host, so I don’t claim to know if this is accurate, but even installing the latest PHP version on the servers (i.e. offering the version for those who want) is too expensive to be considered? I mean, I can see that they have a lot of servers to install PHP on, if they ever actually would do it…But even offering it as a version (not default) is apparently not savvy business logic? Can someone tell me if this is the case?
Would you be capable provisioning a server yourself? If so the most flexible option is cloud hosting with virtualized servers like that of aws (amazon web services). Sounds like you’re looking for a reliable environment to launch many projects. If so I would recommend going the cloud route. Not to mention with a automated provisioning process virtualized environments can be scaled at a touch of a button.