​CES 2015: Seagate introduces new personal cloud storage with small-business potential

Want a plug-in and go private storage cloud for your small business? The new Seagate Personal Cloud lines may all you need.

Las Vegas -- We've all been tempted to put all our files into Dropbox, Google Drive, or OneDrive, but there's some data, such as accounts receivable, you might not want your small business to store on a public cloud service. That's where the Seagate Personal Cloud comes in.

Seagate's marketing its Personal Cloud devices to home-users, but small business users will also find it attractive.

At CES, storage giant Seagate released its latest Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) cloud products. While they're being advertised for consumers who want to access photos, videos and music away from home on their smartphones and tablets, they also enable both individuals and small businesses to securely retrieve and share the data stored on the Seagate Personal Cloud drive.

Indeed, with storage ranging from 3 to 5 Terabytes (TB) on the Personal Cloud line and 4, 6, and 8 TBs on the Personal Cloud 2 Bay line, it seems to me that more small-office/home-office (SOHO) and small businesses will find the Seagate Personal Cloud more useful than consumers. The Personal Cloud 2 Bay can be set up in Redundant Arrays of Inexpensive Disks (RAID) 1 mode for greater security or all the storage can be used for file storage.

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The Seagate Personal Cloud is designed to automatically and continuously back up Windows and Macs. This is done with the Seagate Dashboard program. Personal Cloud devices are also designed to work seamlessly with Apple Time Machine.

These new lines of storage devices aren't simply network-attached storage (NAS) devices with remote Internet access support. They can also be configured to complement a public cloud service. These drives can be set up to automatically back up to popular providers including: Amazon S3, Box, Baidu, DropBox, Google Drive, HiDrive and Yandex Disk. A synchronization option is also available for Baidu, DropBox and Google Drive.

The Personal Cloud devices also include a built-in app manager to install additional programs. These include WordPress, BitTorrent Sync and ElephantDrive. They also come with a software development kit (SDK) so that third party developers can create their own services or integrate them with other cloud and Web-based services.

With features like these does this sound like a consumer device? I don't think so.

True you can also use the Seagate Personal Cloud to stream video and music and that's great. But, I think that these inexpensive storage devices -- prices are said to start at $169 list -- will find just as many homes in small businesses as well as apartments when they go on sale in late January.

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