Who doesn’t love the convenience of cloud storage? Being able to access all your files on any device wherever you go is amazing, but in the past year we’ve seen the downside of putting your private information on a server that might not be as secure as you think. So what’s the solution? How about a tiny personal cloud you can carry in your pocket or on a string around your neck.
Pocket Cloud isn’t perfect, but the most impressive thing about this new Kickstarter project is how simple it really is. The inventors basically took a flash drive, added Wi-Fi support and wrapped it in shiny metal. The result is a sleek little gadget that can easily transfer data and content between devices when you don’t have an Internet connection, and even save files to its own built-in storage. Calling it a cloud isn’t totally accurate, but we think it’s close enough.
The design uses high-quality anodized aluminum and a transparent cover so you can see the hardware inside. It offers built-in LED lights that can be configured to flash when it’s saving, streaming or the battery is low, and an automatic bell that rings when Pocket Cloud gets too far away from your smartphone so you never lose it. The entire thing is also password protected, while the most expensive 64GB model even encrypts your files.
That’s pretty much it. Pocket Cloud is looking for £12,500 (about $20,000) in crowd funding, and the inventors are offering a pretty sweet early bird special. You can grab the 64GB black Pocket Cloud and its charging dock for just £64 plus £5 shipping for a total of roughly $110. Get your early bird order in and it should ship by November 2014.
Once that runs out you’ll still be able to pre-order the 16GB silver model for £70 ($113), a 32GB green version of £100 ($161) or the 64GB Pocket Cloud for the full price of £120 ($194). All three models ship in December with a charging dock, though that only happens if Pocket Cloud hits its crowd-funding goal by October 17.
Pocket Cloud’s inventors already have a working prototype; so the only thing left to do is finalize the design and mass produce the first batch of devices. They’re also working with reliable Chinese factories on the manufacturing process, and don’t expect any delays to hit. Our only real complaint is that we wish the device offered more storage, but that shouldn’t be a real issue if you just use it to transfer files from one device to another.
If you’re dreaming of a personal cloud that’s actually accessible everywhere all the time, this isn’t the device or you. Pocket Cloud can’t be accessed by anyone just because they have a password. Instead you need to be physically close to the flash drive to use it. Still, if you’re looking for a simple way to connect all your gadgets without plugging in a bunch of wires or handing over your personal information to a big company this is a pretty good alternative.