Backing up your files is a popular concept that is only going to continue to grow. It intermingles the convenience of retrieving data on any device, anywhere in the world with the security of cloud storage.
With the growth of mobility with our devices, the importance and role of cloud backup is accelerating at an astounding pace. Some of these trends have brought us ways to keep your photos and videos safe at no cost, ways for you to collaborate documents over the cloud, and there are new ways of mastering the redundant deduplication environment.
Here is our list of the most important trends in 2013
1. The Move To Cloud Storage
Everything is stored in this imaginary cloud, but what is it really? The Cloud is simply the name for a network of connected computers, or, in this case, servers. These servers house our precious memories, important documents, and favorite music.
That's just at the consumer level. When it comes to businesses there are many new, innovative features to look out for like collaborative work spaces and increased security.
If there was any debate whether or not cloud storage was going to stay or go, we are predicting it's here to stay.
2. Media Storage On The Fly
Is 2013 the end of storing media on your own computer? These are pictures I took with my iPhone camera, the next thing I knew, they were uploaded to Google+ Instant Upload. It's almost to the point where you can store ALL of your images using social networks, but should you store them there?
- You can retrieve the full resolution image
- No thinking, just do what you do
- Edit images (very basic editing)
- Privacy issues (according to this post)
- Would not trust it 100% as a backup for important photos
There are several social networks that will gladly take your photos for free. Facebook and Google+ are the big two.
A good alternative to storing media on social networks are companies like MyPC Backup, JustCloud, SugarSync, Dropbox, etc... In the future these companies will make sharing photos to social networks seamless and without the fear of privacy breaches or unwanted access to your private photos. Smartphone online backup guide.
In 2013, storing media on social networks and apps will be so integrated with our devices, it will become less necessary to include large image, video or music files when you are looking to back up your personal computer. If you choose to let social networks backup your media, you will only have to worry about backing up your other essential files. Files like word documents, excel sheets, private media, etc... take up less space and will cost less to store.
3. Out-Of-The-Box Personal Cloud
Transporter is probably the coolest device I've heard about for cloud storage in the past year or so. It was funded by a Kickstarter project which gained traction and ended up making almost TRIPLE it's projected budget.
So what's so cool about this little guy? The transporter is a personal cloud you set up and control. You buy one for your home, office or wherever, and you're all connected to the same cloud. When a file is stored on Transporter, it automatically syncs to the other connected devices.
You can expand your cloud network at your own pace. Simply invite others to join in your cloud and all your data is shared inside this private network.
- Files are kept local for quick retrieval
- Secure network that you own and control
- Easy to share with new users
- No RAID configuration or built in redundancy
- You can only rely on yourself to ensure the data is safe
This new idea about managing your cloud is cool, but will it stand the test of time? In 2013 and beyond, we will find out. Some people will find it very useful to have a drive that is local and part of a cloud. Others will find it just as easy to use an external harddrive along side of a backup company like IDrive.
4. Cloud Collaboration Continues To Improve
Box is a collaborative cloud interface that allows you to work on documents with an internal user base. It is meant for businesses who work on data in groups. It keeps all of the versions of your files and gives you tools to share, comment and edit within your work group. Cloud collaboration guide.
Google Docs (Now called Google Drive) has been around for a long time now. It's interface improves with age, features become better and security is more reliable. It does not have same functionality or features of Microsoft Office, but it's got more than enough to satisfy the casual user.
In 2013, more and more people will be using these systems for working on projects. Even Evernote, which is known for it's personal note taking abilities, has opened the door to collaboration in their business version.
5. Employees Can Work From Anywhere
With so many WIFI spots now, it's always possible to get a connection to your work. Whether you're at the airport, a coffee shop or in bed, you can always connect to your work documents.
In 2013, expect to see an increase in employers buying their employees laptops for traveling and telecommuting. This is because working within the cloud will be much easier and small businesses will start to budget for collaborative cloud work space.
Encryption of data is expected to get better and better. Like IDrive's announcement that they have made an "Unbreakable" private key encryption with cloud storage and sync. This makes it much safer for employees who travel and use unknown WIFI for backing up.
Laptops like Chromebooks, utilize the cloud for all of it's operations. Everything you use on the computer is stored in your "Drive". I would not be surprised if we saw cloud-only laptop implementation like this more in 2013 (or later) from competitors like Apple.
6. New Technology
There are many improvements in cloud computing that have been implemented slowly in the past few years that will continue to grow in 2013. This means the old methods of backing up data will be less and less relevant.
The biggest fight is between disk drives and tape storage. For long term backups, tapes have been used because they offer more surface volume per inch than current disk drives, however they are slow and inefficient. In the next couple years we will see drives from Seagate around 5Tbits per square inch in 2015-2016. In 2013 we will probably not see a change of methodology in long term storage, but an increase in redundant servers. Redundant servers are part of an array of servers that are used to safeguard against drive failures. Need more info?
Deduplication is a popular, growing type of software that searches for duplicated files and automatically only stores one copy. This removes unnecessary duplications which saves space.
Lastly, Solid State Drives will replace disk drive when they become efficient enough to use. Right now, they do not hold enough space for their cost, but their speed is much faster than disk drives. I'm sure some backup companies will offer Solid State Drives as a premium option, but it will not be standard for a while.