Monday, September 19, 2011
Bitcasa & The Promise Of Infinite Cloud Storage
Bitcasa looks like the Holy Grail of Cloud Computing. I think they totally dig what today's computing lacks in terms of ease of use & backup automation.
One thing that I hate is to install a new computer. It's something I usually try to avoid for as long as possible and probably the reason why I don't upgrade my hardware as often as I'd like to. Going through a whole day of data migration, settings troubleshooting etc. is just something that nobody, no matter how computer savvy they are, is looking forward to.
The promise of Bitcasa is to change today's paradigm by getting rid entirely of the local storage concept: EVERYTHING IS IN THE CLOUDS. You, therefore, needn't worry about downloading all your data from your online storage service (such as SugarSync or Dropbox), a task which can take days if not weeks when installing a new computer. You just access it in real time through the Internet.
Of course, there are challenges to this approach. Many will argue they don't want to be isolated from their data if they don't have Internet connectivity. To address this, Bitcasa will cache some of the most frequently accessed files on your local computer. I would also say that, in my case, I rarely use my computer when I don't have Internet connectivity as most of the things I do are online. I, thus, don't anticipate to be frustrated if I can't access my files when offline.
A second challenge lies in access time. If you want to access an online HD movie, how fast will it stream / download to your computer? Although, Bitcasa demonstration at TC disrupt was impressive when they simultaneously streamed two HD trailers, we don't know how fast their Internet connection was at the time.
If the two challenges described above are overcome, I believe Bitcasa has the potential of revolutionizing the way we use our computers and make our lives much easier. It might even help sell more computers as consumers might be less reluctant to go through the trouble of migrating their data to new ones.
Last but not least, Bitcasa said they would price their service at US$ 10 per month which I think is a no-brainer. Just think about how often you buy additional storage for your computer or the pain of manually backing up your data on a regular basis. Bitcasa will enable you to forget about all this for US$10 per month and you'll have the ease of mind of knowing that your data is safe with them.
In my opinion, Bitcasa qualifies as the perfect companion for MacBook Air users!
If anyone at Bicasa is reading me, please send me a beta invite!