One of the most interesting developments in cloud computing is happening in the domain of personal computing. Given that the average person is already accessing email, photos, and other services not stored on his computer directly, it makes sense to migrate everything to the cloud. That’s why there has been a strong growth in cloud storage services being offered for individuals. But as with everything else in technology, the ground of personal cloud is not without its disadvantages.
Here’s a deeper look at the dark corners of personal cloud:
- Compatibility concerns: Normally this doesn’t matter so much, but chances are the cloud drivers will be incompatible with some older hardware you may still want to use. The best example is old models of printers, which the cloud might just refuse to recognize.
- Bandwidth limitations: It’s good to know that your data is stored remotely, but accessing everything from the cloud requires considerable network prowess. For most users, this is not a practical option because their broadband is either limited or not fast enough to effect the data transfer quickly.
- Subscription cost: The free version of cloud storage has a limit that is soon crossed. Beyond this, the subscription costs might become impractical for the average person. Consider that most subscriptions need to be renewed periodically, which means the total cost can shoot through the roof.
- Security: Security is always a practical concern. Looking at the recent embarrassments some major companies have gone thorough, users should think twice before putting valuable data online.
The personal cloud has its uses, and if it’s only a small amount of no-so-important data you want to offload, it’s a good choice. But that in itself points to very little utility.