7 Cheap Cloud Storage Options
November 15, 2012 11:06 AM You have a multitude of cloud storage choices beyond Dropbox, for enterprise and personal use. But make sure you understand the differences.
Cubby: All-Around Appeal, With Limitations
If Cubby's name evokes a preschool storage space, that's appropriate since Cubby, as a beta release, is less mature than many competing projects. Cubby, however, is a precocious kid who learned to read early thanks to an attentive parent.
That parent is LogMeIn, which has years of experience creating remote access tools. The company has passed on a number of capabilities to Cubby.
The product offers 5 GB of free storage, and users can gain up to 20 more by convincing friends to sign up. Whereas some competitors use Amazon Web Services for capacity, Cubby is built on LogMeIn's Gravity Data Services, the company's proprietary cloud. A PC with Cubby installed can set up syncing to the cloud through a simple drag-and-drop interface. Updates are automatically synced thereafter unless the user specifies otherwise.
Security comes in the form of 256-bit encryption, the same level that most banking and online shopping sites use, and content can be shared both publicly and privately. The service offers unlimited versioning, meaning that if an updated version of a document is synced to a user's account, the user will still be able to access previous iterations.
Cubby also includes a function called DataSync that, rather than connecting to the cloud, establishes a peer-to-peer tunnel between two devices. This option is a nice touch for those who simply want to move files between computers; even nicer is the fact that these transfers don't count against a user's storage limit.
Acknowledging that the product isn't fully polished, there are some missing pieces. Linux compatibility, for example, is planned but has yet to be implemented. There also isn't any support for Windows Phone or BlackBerry, and it's not clear what kind of add-on features or extra security will be included -- or at what cost. For these reasons alone, Cubby won't work for everyone. Whether it will become suitable for deployment across a large workforce is particularly uncertain.
Even so, Android and iOS devices can already link to the LogMeIn cloud, meaning that most users' mobile needs are covered. With strong security and free services, Cubby could be a viable option for individual users, SMBs, specific groups within an enterprise -- basically anyone looking for secure, simple, and low-cost options for storage, sharing and syncing.