From Photo Cloud Storage to Video Streaming, Your Life is in the Cloud
“Wherever you go, there you are,” is a phrase originally attributed to Confucius, but which also found purchase in the camp sci-fi movie The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension. Though its original purpose (the proverb, not the movie) was to deliver a marvellous philosophical sound bite about “being,” it can be now also be seen as heralding the age of the personal cloud, in which all that is important to us – our memories, our photographs, our music, our documents and our interactions, are free to follow us wherever we choose to go, and are permanently available and accessible through whichever device we currently have at hand.
The personal cloud is poised to become an even bigger player in 2014 as more and more consumers come on board, all with the full expectation of having access to reliable and spacious storage for their personal media.
This is no surprise to experts like Rob Boirun, founder of DrivePop, (www.drivepop.com) a cloud-based backup and online data storage company based in Huntsville, Alabama. Rob has spent his whole career in data-storage, having originally founded BurnWorld, an authority on all types of burnable media such as optical drives. Boirun recognizes that customers are looking for huge amounts of space, with great capacity for streaming down to their portable devices. “No matter where a person travels,” he says, “it is important these stored files, such as photographs and favorite songs, are there with them, on demand.”
“This represents a tremendous shift in the way that people actually exist,” he says. “The convenience of reliable, high-speed cloud access gives people opportunities to do things they never could before, things they might not have yet thought of.” He points out the benefits of collaborative environments, for example. In earlier years documents were emailed back and forth, and numerous versions were created. Now, the cloud allows people to access and edit documents simultaneously without the need for duplicates or for document tracking. This is still a relatively unknown concept for many companies, who remain stuck in a mindset in which the formal approach to meeting, talking and writing has not truly changed since the 1940’s (email after all is simply what its name describes: it is electronic mail, not electronic conversation).
Cloud-based collaboration goes far beyond static documents, of course, with applications being developed daily to improve the way presentations are created and delivered, how projects are managed and how meetings are run, even how to plan routes for travel using real-time traffic data.
Then, of course, there is streaming media. It would be very difficult for any one of us to go back to a world where there was no such thing as viewing a video on your smartphone in the back of a cab, or accessing a real-time map to find out where we need to be. The expectation now is that Wi-Fi is everywhere and data is guaranteed.
The other major benefit of the personal cloud comes from sharing and synchronization. People love to – and now need to – share files, photos and information, and to have such media immediately distributable and updated across numerous devices and numerous platforms within seconds of having been taken.
To be able to backup photos online, automatically has provided greater freedom and time efficiency for people of all ages. Secure backup, too, is now much more of a real-time, invisible process that is expected to occur instantaneously and behind-the-scenes, even when the documents that are being backed up are in use.
“In a word,” he says, “the world of online data storage has truly become live.”
“Many of these ideas, such as online photo backup are familiar to a great many consumers already, through their experiences with public services such as iCloud,” Boirun points out, “but what they may not be aware of is just how much horsepower is required on the back end to make sure it all runs smoothly and reliably. This is where his experience in online data storage truly shines. “To move data from point A to point B in a flawless fashion requires a wide collection of different types of smarts,” he says. Companies that are considering pairing with a cloud vendor for storage and data streaming must be careful to ensure that the vendor has both the business experience and the resources (both human and technical) to ensure a secure and efficient transmission of data in both directions, as well as the people and customer service chops to listen to a customer’s needs and fears. These two items do not always appear together when a cloud vendor is staffed solely by IT engineers or by salesmen.
This human element is often forgotten by many high-tech firms who prefer to focus on the machinery and leave the customer to wade through a sea of call center switchboards and FAQs. And that is a key differentiator between the free services that offer to “backup photos online” and the value-added services such as DrivePop that promise to take care of a customer’s entire data library needs, automatically and reliably.
Boirun’s advice to companies considering a move to an online data storage company is to do some homework. Find out where and how a company stores and encrypts its data (DrivePop uses a military-grade encryption system); find out how versatile their access can be, for example whether streaming data and access can be achieved via any device including tablets and smartphones; talk to some existing clients; and of course Google them.
DrivePop is a US-based company that provides backup and storage services to clients worldwide. They are currently in the midst of a 50% off promotional signup program. To take advantage of a lifetime 50% off annual rate you better jump in quick at http://www.drivepop.com/deals
By Steve Prentice
Sponsored Post By DrivePop
Steve is an acclaimed author and professional speaker who delivers timely, relevant, entertaining and informative keynotes dealing with technology, people and productivity in the workplace. As a mentor, he works with executives in one-on-one discussions, delivering answers and guidance to issues dealing with technology, personal time management and other practical skills. In addition, Steve is also a technology writer and consultant for CloudTweaks Media.
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