What Is CodeSandbox? A Look Into Its Features, Pricing & Alternatives

Yogesh Pant
Dec 22, 2023

The technology behind web development has been instrumental in positioning the industry as one of the most growing and lucrative markets. Not just for businesses, there is a lot more for developers. Online editors are one such tool that is making sense among the community. However, as a developer, we often face situations when these online editors don’t work according to our expectations. Distressed with it, we searched a lot on the internet and found CodeSandbox to be the most recommended online editor. So, we immediately gave it a try. 

At a glance, CodeSandbox is basically a cloud-based IDE (Integrated development environment) that helps developers write clean codes faster, collaborate with others, and transfer projects from any device. It has plenty of use cases, spanning from developing a web app to experimenting with the code and testing concepts. 

If you’re new to web-based IDEs or CodeSandbox to be specific, then this blog is going to be your go-to guide. We will walk through every aspect of this CodeSandbox review to understand what it is and how it works, its features, pricing, and alternatives, and at last, finish it off with our honest review based on our personal experience. 

What is CodeSandbox?

CodeSandbox is a cloud web editor that allows developers to code, collaborate, and ship web applications of any size from any device. It was launched in 2017 by Ives van Hoorne and Bas Buursma, who wanted to create a tool that would make web development more accessible and hassle-free. 

CodeSandbox supports various frameworks and languages, such as React, Vue, Angular, TypeScript, Svelte, and more. It also provides features such as live reloading, hot module replacement, code formatting, testing, debugging, and deployment. 

This advanced development tool is ideal for prototyping, learning, experimenting, and sharing web development projects. Users can create sandboxes from scratch or use one of the many templates available. They can also import and export projects from GitHub, and collaborate with other developers in real time. 

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How CodeSandbox Work?

CodeSandbox works by creating a virtual machine in the cloud that runs your code and provides a live preview of your app. You can edit your code online using the CodeSandbox editor, which supports features like auto-completion, syntax highlighting, linting, and formatting. You can also import and export your projects from GitHub, GitLab, Bitbucket, and other repositories.

CodeSandbox integrates with many services and platforms that enhance your development experience. For example, you can use CodeSandbox to deploy your app to Netlify, Vercel, Firebase, and other hosting providers. 

You can also use CodeSandbox to test your app with Jest, Cypress, Testing Library, and other testing tools. Additionally, its purpose extends to collaborating with other developers in real time, sharing feedback, debugging issues, and tracking changes.

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What Makes CodeSandbox The Best IDE Out There?

The features of CodeSandbox make it unique and the best cloud-based web development editor. While analyzing CodeSandbox, here’s what we found special about CodeSandbox. 

Instant Cloud Development Environments

CodeSandbox provides you with a ready-to-use development environment in seconds. You don't need to install anything on your device or set up any configuration. You can start coding right away using one of the 100+ templates, or import your own GitHub repository. You can also access your sandboxes from any device, anywhere.

Live Collaboration and Sharing

CodeSandbox makes it easy to collaborate and share your projects with others. You can invite your teammates to join your sandbox and code together in real-time. You can also share your sandbox with anyone using a unique URL, or embed it on your website or blog. You can also export your sandbox to GitHub or Netlify, or download it as a ZIP file.

Integrated Tools and Frameworks

CodeSandbox supports a wide range of web development tools and frameworks, such as React, Vue, Angular, TypeScript, Node.js, and more. You can use the built-in code editor, terminal, console, and debugger, or connect your own VS Code or GitHub editor.

You can also install any npm package, or use the CodeSandbox API to extend your sandbox with custom functionality. CodeSandbox Javascript is one of the most useful integrations to date.

All in all, CodeSandbox tools and advanced functionalities make it a powerful and versatile platform that can help you learn, create, and share your web projects. 

Is It Safe to Use CodeSandbox?

Yes, CodeSandbox is completely safe to use because of the robust security measures it has in place. According to the CodeSandbox website, they use secure HTTPS connections, encrypt your data, and back up your projects regularly. They also claim that they isolate your code from other users and run it in a dedicated microVM. This means that your code cannot access or harm any other code or system.

However, as with any online service, there are some risks involved. For example, you should be careful about sharing your code with others, as they might modify or delete it. You should also be aware of the terms and conditions of CodeSandbox, as they might change or terminate the service at any time.

Overall, CodeSandbox seems to be a safe and reliable tool for coding in the cloud. It has many positive reviews from users who praise its features, ease of use, and customer service. However, you should always exercise caution and common sense when using any online service, and back up your code regularly.

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What is CodeSandbox Used For?

CodeSandbox has many use cases that make it a powerful and convenient tool for web development, such as:

  • Instant Online IDE: You can start coding in seconds without installing anything on your local machine. CodeSandbox provides you with a fully-featured online editor, a live preview, a terminal, and a file explorer.
  • Pre-built Templates: You can choose from over 100 templates to jumpstart your project with a pre-configured environment. You can also create your own templates and share them with others.
  • Collaboration and Sharing: You can invite others to join your project and code together in real-time. You can also share your project with a unique URL, embed it on your website, or export it to GitHub or CodePen.
  • Deployment and Hosting: You can deploy your project to production with one click using popular services like Vercel, Netlify, or Firebase. You can also use your own custom domain and SSL certificate.

With CodeSandbox, you can develop a wide range of web applications, such as:

  • Interactive Websites: You can use HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to create dynamic and responsive websites that showcase your portfolio, blog, or business.
  • Single-page Applications: You can use frameworks like React, Angular, or Vue to create fast and modern web apps that run entirely in the browser.
  • Server-side Applications: You can use Node.js, Express, or GraphQL to create backend logic and APIs for your web apps. You can also use databases like MongoDB, PostgreSQL, or Firebase to store and manage your data.
  • Full-stack Applications: You can combine frontend and backend technologies to create complex and scalable web apps that handle both the user interface and the business logic.

Is CodeSandbox Free?

CodesSandbox is an open-source and free-to-use code editor. However, the free version has some limitations, which can only be lifted when you pay for a subscription. The pro plans start from $15 per month. 

The CodeSandbox personal plan is a free version, which comes with Codeium code completion, unlimited public devboxes, sandboxes, and repositories.  

At the same time, the Pro plan is priced at $15 per editor for a month. You can increase the capacity to 2-3 users with just $2 per month added to the base plan price. The features of the CodeSandbox Pro plan include private Devboxes and sandboxes, private npm packages, VS code extensions, Live sessions, and much more. 

Additionally, there is an option to upgrade to Enterprise Plan, which is best for large-scale businesses and large teams. The plan features include everything from the Pro plan, plus access to unlimited editors, a privately managed cloud, dedicated support, SSO, and more. 

How to Use CodeSandbox Editor?

To use CodeSandbox, you need to follow these steps:

  • Go to https://codesandbox.io/ and sign up for a free account. After that, save the CodeSandbox login credentials. 
  • Click on the "Create Sandbox" button and choose a template or import an existing project from GitHub or URL.
  • Start coding in the editor and see the live preview of your app in the browser.
  • You can also add dependencies, configure settings, run tests, and collaborate with others using the sidebar.
  • When you are done, you can save, fork, export, or share your sandbox with a unique URL.

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Pros and Cons of CodeSandbox



Huge selection of in-built templates

Relatively costly subscriptions

Access to external resources

Frequent time-out issues

Best for team-oriented developers

Live development environments

Input dependencies on the go. 

Top 10 CodeSandbox Alternatives to Consider

If you are on the lookout for the best CodeSandbox alternative, consider our list of top 10 best online web editors that are worth considering for high-quality web development. 

1). CSS Desk

Wesbite: https://cssdeck.com/ 

CSS Desk is a code editor for HTML, JavaScript, and CSS that runs faster than CodeSandbox. It has a superior coding layout screen, but fewer features than CodeSandbox. 

But in terms of collaboration and learning, CSS Desk is a great alternative to CodeSandbox. It has a large and active community that regularly posts coding samples and useful resources.

2. JS Fiddle

Website: https://jsfiddle.net/ 

JS Fiddle is one of the oldest and most feature-rich code playgrounds. It has a lot of frameworks and libraries for developers who create complex websites. 

JS Fiddle supports all HTML, CSS, and JavaScript combinations. It focuses on coding features but does not have many social features that other platforms have. The simple interface and user-friendly experience may appeal to you.


Website: https://playcode.io/ 

PLAYCODE is a great choice for beginners who want to experiment with code playgrounds without any hassle. This website is similar to CodeSandbox, but with a simpler interface and features that are easy to use for novice developers. 

PLAYCODE allows you to create multiple HTML, JavaScript, and CSS files for your project. It also has a free editor and a log console that give you full control over the preview window, making it the perfect CodeSandbox alternative.  

4. Plunker 

Website: https://plnkr.co/ 

Plunker is a free platform that enables social collaboration among developers. On this website, developers can work together, and exchange ideas and feedback in real time. Plunker can improve your teamwork and make your project faster. 

The only drawback of Plunker is that it is not as fast as its rivals. But apart from that, Plunker is a very helpful website for developers and project managers.

5. CodePen

Website: https://codepen.io/ 

CodePen is a platform that emphasizes online teamwork and community aspects. It allows you to create and modify multiple files as you wish. This website is free and enables you to work with other developers in real-time. 

CodePen is ideal for remote work or situations where you cannot meet your project partners in person. It also gives you the option to export and deploy your projects to relevant websites.  

6. JS Bin

GitHub - jsbin/jsbin: Collaborative JavaScript Debugging App

Website: https://jsbin.com/?html,output 

JS Bin is a suitable playground for beginners who want to learn the fundamentals of coding. JS Bin offers a variety of features such as JS libraries, preprocessors, a logging console, and more. You can access features such as custom URLs, asset uploading, and private bins by upgrading to the paid version.

7. Replit

Website: https://replit.com/ 

Replit is an online platform that lets you code, test, and deploy your projects with various tools like linters, debuggers, hosting, deployment, etc. You can also work with other developers in real-time using this platform. 

Replit gives you a secure and private online workspace for your projects. You can use it for different kinds of coding languages. It also has a dark mode feature for your preference. 

8. KodeWeave

Website: https://kodeweave.com/ 

KodeWeave is a versatile code editor that can run offline too. You can also use it to create desktop apps. It is very user-friendly as it can be stored in a USB and does not need any installation. It also does not require any sign-up to use its features.

9. AWS Cloud9

Website: https://aws.amazon.com/cloud9/ 

AWS Cloud9 is a cloud-based playground that lets you code in more than 40 languages. You can enjoy features such as flexible themes, code completion, multiple cursors, Node Js integration, and many others. 

This playground gives you access to a range of advanced coding tools. It has a simple and user-friendly interface that makes your coding experience smooth and easy.  

10. Deepnote

Website: https://deepnote.com/ 

Deepnote is a platform for data teams to work together. You can collaborate and share your work with ease using this playground. The app allows you to integrate various tools and frameworks.  

This playground is a better option than CodeSandbox for data projects. It boosts the team's efficiency with features like scheduling, multiplayer, custom environments, comments, and more.

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After several recommendations to use CodeSandbox, we have been using it for over 5 months now. And now here’s our verdict on the platform:

CodeSandbox is one of the best cloud IDEs with some of the most useful tools and functionalities. These features are enough to make coding easier and accessible to developers. You can literally create codes or even experiment with them in live development environments. 

At the same time, the platform has a free-to-use option for developers. While not all features are available in the free version but are enough to get started. Therefore, we highly recommend CodeSandbox. 


How Do I Use React CodeSandbox?  

You can use React CodeSandbox to create and edit React projects online, using a variety of templates and frameworks.

Is CodeSandbox Open-source?  

Yes, CodeSandbox is open-source and you can find its source code on GitHub.

What is the Use of CodeSandbox?  

CodeSandbox is a cloud development platform that lets you code, collaborate, and ship projects of any size from any device.

How to Use CodeSandbox Live?  

CodeSandbox Live allows you to share your code with others in real-time, and see the changes as they happen.

Can You Download from CodeSandbox?  

Yes, you can download your project from CodeSandbox as a ZIP file, or export it to GitHub or Netlify.

How to Create a Project in CodeSandbox?  

You can create a project in CodeSandbox by choosing one of the 100+ templates or importing an existing project from GitHub or a URL.

How to Export Code from CodeSandbox?  

You can export your code from CodeSandbox to GitHub, Netlify, or Vercel, or download it as a ZIP file.

How to Save Code in CodeSandbox?  

You can save your code in CodeSandbox by clicking the Save button, or by enabling auto-save in the preferences.

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