Tag Archives: Mozy

iPhone in the Clouds with Diamonds

iPhone and Cloud Computing

iPhone represents a phenomenal growth in user-generated data, as Joe Tucci alluded to in his EMC World 2008 keynote, when he said that by 2010:

  • 70% will come from individual creation
  • 85% will become the responsibility of organizations: YouTube, Flickr, Twitter, Google

We know that since the advent of the iPhone just over a year ago, Google has experienced a HUGE jump in mobile access to its site, primarily via this device with it’s image-rich Safari Mobile web browser. As Google mobile product manager Matt Waddell said back in March,

“We have very much hit a watershed moment in terms of mobile Internet usage. We are seeing that mobile Internet use is in fact accelerating… as many as 50 times more Web searches” vs. standard, so-called feature phones.

According to data released by M:Metrics, roughly 85% of iPhone users access the mobile Internet and almost 60% perform mobile web search. These numbers are dramatic and outstrip usage on other smart phones as well.

While the iPhone 2.0 firmware upgrade release will increase the appetite for end-user device consumption, including over-the-air downloads, the iPhone 3G will double or triple the data download speed over the first generation iPhone. Greater speed will likely mean greater consumption.

Cellphone tower triangulation has been a feature on the old iPhone as well as other mobile devices, but the new GPS capabilities of the iPhone 3G will mean even greater online data consumption.

mobileme.png

The implications on data consumption, and on cloud computing with MobileMe can be significant. Apple used the term “cloud computing” at their announcement at the WWDC in San Francisco. The idea is that any item you change in your Calendar, Contacts, or Email will be near-instantly be changed in the cloud and be updated on your Macintosh (if you have one) or on a web-based tool on your Windows PC.

The service will be MobileMe, the rebranding of Apple’s .Mac service. It will be beefed up in space to 20GB of space and will cost $99/year. For those who already have .Mac, they’ll be automatically upgraded. This secure online server holds the information and pushes the updates to the other locations in seconds. On the Mac it will work with the native applications: iCal, Address Book, and Mail. On the PC it will work with Windows XP or Vista. On the handheld, it will work with the iPhone or iPod Touch. As Apple calls it, “Exchange for the rest of us.

The PC web-based applications will be available from MobileMe at me.com. There will be mail, contacts, calendar, photo gallery, and iDisk, the online file storage. This is not the first time we’ve seen cloud computing, but it’s the first time we’ve heard Apple discussing it in a product launch. Cloud computing is the popular name for a number of different trends and technologies that involve online computing, data manipulation and storage.

One of the more popular consumer applications of cloud computing is Mozy Backup, which I’ve mentioned before. For about $5 a month, a user can backup an unlimited amount of PC or Mac data “into the cloud” over the Internet. The initial full backup can take some time, but thereafter, it backups just incremental changes at a block level. For those who want “off site” backup, this is ideal… and at much capacity than .Mac/MobileMe offers.

I’ve been asked about the implications of cloud computing.

Question:

Isn’t my data on someone else’s server?

Answer:

Yes, just like your email is at your ISP before you download it (via POP) and as it always is if you use IMAP email.

The trade-off here is the sense of insecurity in having your private data somewhere else (though Mozy encrypts it) compared to the flexibility of being able to access it anywhere that you can connect over the Internet. I gave up POP email years ago for the convenience of being able to collect it on the road, at work, at home, or from a hand held device, using server-side spam filtering and sorting. Another concern is:

Question:

If I can’t get online, won’t I be without  access to my information?

Answer:

Yes, unless it’s synced locally to your hand held (like an iPhone), or unless you have an offline copy. Technologies like Google Gears are making browser based information more persistent when disconnected.

Who knows what the future holds for other more powerful technologies.

Thanks for coming along.

BillPetro.com

EMC World: Day 2 Recap

lasvegas_sign.jpgEMC WORLD: DAY 2 RECAP

EMC World, in its 2nd day in Las Vegas, is by and for engineers. While there are more suits present than in previous years, nevertheless most of the presenters are usually not polished marketing presenters but often the software developer who wrote the code for the product. This provides a level of unparalleled access for attendees.

I had lunch with a SAN Administrator for a state government office and we discussed data replication at a pretty deep level. This gentleman was a heavy user of the technology and was particularly impressed with EMC’s RecoverPoint technology. I asked if he found the price-point to be prohibitive. He assured me that it was quite attractive: the price had dropped since the product was initially released, and it offered so many features and such great capabilities that it eliminated the need for spending money on lots of other technologies. He found it to be ideal in a VMware environment and was excellent in the event he needed disaster recovery.

I’m typing this article in the Cyber Cafe, a number of stands with numerous laptops set up for attendees to use between talks and strolls through the Solutions Pavilion (Exhibit Hall). The EMC sysadmins have done a great job setting them up, with easy access to web browsers. They told me, however, that some will unplug them so that they can plug in their own laptops to charge them. Bad idea. The batteries have been removed from these laptops — I’m told they tend to grow legs and walk away — and as soon as they are unplugged, they shut down.

Speaking of the Pavilion, I spent some time speaking to a variety of exhibitors today. Not only are there “the usual suspects” but as in years past, some competitors on the floor as well, showing the openness of the show. Here’s what caught my eye and ear:

  • ss4200e.jpgIntel SS4200-E

With a name that rolls off the tongue, this is the Intel version of the product I mentioned in my previous post yesterday that Dave Donatelli referenced as the perfect graduation present — a sub-$500 external Network Attached Storage (NAS) device for consumers, that leverages EMC’s LifeLine software. The demo is a device that takes 1-4 internal drives (sold separately) that can provide RAID protection as well as a variety of media services. For example the device can speak to an Xbox as a bridge, display movies to a widescreen TV… display photos to a digital picture frame… provide web-accessible photos to a remote device like an iPhone… play MP3s through an iTunes server… etc.

  • iomegacenterlogo_ec65.pngIomega

While slightly later to market, and with the intention of addressing a slightly different market than Intel, Iomega — currently being acquired by EMC — also previewed their LifeLine-based offering. It will be available in different configurations than the Intel offering, but with all the same capabilities. This is one to keep an eye out for.

  • retrospect.gifRetrospect

Acquired years ago by EMC as part of the Dantz acquisition, this well respected consumer and small business backup solution was, 20 years ago, the only 3rd party backup product for the Macintosh. This is features as part of LifeLine, and new features and capabilities are coming that will make this a compelling offering for both local and cloud-based backup

  • mozy_logo.pngMozy

Speaking of cloud-based backup, this popular technology, acquired last year by EMC, allows consumers and small businesses to have SAAS (Software As A Service) backup for pennies a day. An application on a Mac or PC backups files over the Internet in encrypted form, initially as a full backup, then block-level incrementals thereafter. Offsite backup without having to move backup media offsite.

  • 3D or Data De-Duplication

Mark Twomey, also known as Storagezilla, was in the EMC booth explaining the new data de-duplication capabilities of the EMC Disk Libraries. Mark knows everyone.

I’ve reported more details via Twitter. These can be found either at:

Thanks for coming along.

BillPetro.com