A few days ago I signed up for a freecloud storage account with Wuala, the Swiss based service run by backup hardware maker LaCie. After kicking the tires a bit I went up to their site and signed up for additional space. Coincidentally LaCie announced today that Wuala would be a paid-only service going forward. My note to their sales guys follows.
Just wanted to voice my support for your decison to move to a paid-only service. I had already decided to increase my storage, and so begin to pay for your service, before this announcement. But I would have supported this move in any event, because I think it is important that an important service like yours continues to thrive in a very competitive market. “There is no such thing as a free lunch”, as some say here. Another one I’ve heard recently is “if you’re not a customer, you’re product”. The amount you are going to charge for 5G of storage is extremely reasonable. Given the pricing of mass storage from infrastructure providers like Amazon and Google it is probably break-even at best. Coupled with your excellent client software and end-to-end encryption that represents a real bargain for users.
The new pricing structure isn’t really much different from the old. The cost for 5G of storage is now just $1.39 a month, or $12 a year. You could get storage cheaper if you used Amazon’s (AWS) S3 directly, but that arrangement would not get you Wuala’s excellent sync client and end-to-end encryption. After using AWS S3 for a while I came to the conclusion that despite its being a terrific deal for server backups, it wasn’t going to work well for backing up the Windows machines, tablets and smartphones in this house. I really need my family along for the ride when it comes to backing up their data. A reliable, easy to use, Windows client like Wuala’s is essential for that.