Research shows that most small businesses use over 3 information Clouds

in Technology

[prMac.com] London, United Kingdom - SMEStorage, the multi-cloud data access provider, polled 1000 of its users to understand how many information clouds they use, and also to understand the challenges that they face.

Of those who responded it was found that the average number of file based storage clouds that were used were three. The breakdown of these were typically two for personal use and one for business use. Of the two for personal use, Google Docs and Amazon S3 were the most popular with Microsoft SkyDrive and Amazon S3 the second most popular combination. Amazon S3 was the most popular storage cloud used for business. Google Docs was the most popular used for documents closely followed by Microsoft SkyDrive.

Of those polled 91% used some form of file server, file store, or stored data only on their PC or laptop. The biggest challenges identified for moving this data to the clouds were availability, security, and speed of access.

Also the majority of users polled had two or more email clients. One or more for personal use and one for work. Asked how much file based information they believed was stored in their email clients over 70% of respondents answered that the amount of file information stored in email was 'substantial' and 'important'.

The majority of users used at least one social network cloud with 45% using two or more and 37% using at least two. The most popular social network with respondents was LinkedIn, followed by Facebook. The most popular combination was LinkedIn and FaceBook with the second most popular combination being LinkedIn and Twitter. Evernote was also used by 27% of respondents.

The most important information stored in Social network clouds that respondents identified was contact information, with the second most important information being identified as photos.

Only 2% of respondents had attempted any form of backup of social network information with 67% believing it was important to do. Contact information was outlined as the most important thing to back up.

The top challenges that respondents identified for the use of Cloud for the majority of their data were: Desktop tooling / ease of use; 'On the move' access from different devices; Security and Safety of data; Availability and speed.

SMEStorage has over 100,000 users using it's multi-cloud Data Access platform and conducted the research to understand how it can best serve it's users for forthcoming feature enhancements.

SMEStorage already provides the ability to view file clouds, including email clouds, in an aggregated view from a 'Virtual Cloud File System' either directly from a web browser, or from virtual drives on either Windows, Mac or Linux Desktop's.

SMEStorage also provides clients for iPad, iPhone, Android, and BlackBerry. The SMEStorage CloudDav service which enables WebDav over clouds that do not natively support WebDav also enables integration with other smart devices that have native WebDav support, such as the Nokia N8 smartphone.

Additionally SMEStorage also currently enables the backing up of Social network contacts as well public/private file encryption over any storage clouds to enhance the security of data.

Future feature enhancements that SMEStorage intends to roll out include the ability to use the Amazon S3 APi as an entry point for all supported storage clouds; Support for backing up Evernote, Twitter and Instapaper clouds; Support for new storage clouds that will include Google Storage and PogoPlug; Richer desktop and sync clients for all desktop operating systems.

SMEStorage provides provide a cloud storage gateway in which file meta-data is synchronised, but all files continue to reside on the original storage platform. In this way SMEStorage can offer value added services and clients to existing cloud storage providers, whilst also providing a single cloud file system which enables files from many different cloud storage providers to be managed in one cloud file tree. SMEStorage provide services to individual users, and also to corporate users via its Organisation 'FileServer in the Cloud' platform offering, which combines file sharing, user management and collaboration features. Copyright (C) 2010 SMEStorage. All Rights Reserved.

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