Sure, there are plenty of physical storage options out there, but WD's new My Cloud does a little more than the traditional external hard drives. For starters, and as the name would suggest, My Cloud can connect to your own home (or office) network and allow you to wirelessly transfer files to and from it. What's more interesting here, however, is that WD's making it easy to access the plug-and-play device from anywhere -- for example, you can be in a completely different continent and still be able to upload / download files. There's also a USB 3.0 which acts as an expansion option, Gigabit Ethernet for wired connectivity, DLNA features and an undisclosed dual-core CPU to handle most of the load.
Better yet, because it's a local network drive, there's no need to format it for Mac or Windows, making it compatible with both from the get-go and leaving out the need for any unwanted software. To manage things like users, storage space and advanced settings, Western Digital has introduced the companion My Cloud Dashboard, which can be accessed via a desktop application. On the mobile side, there are apps for iOS and Android that allow users to upload photos, videos, documents and other type of files, as well as integrate with cloud services including Google Drive, SkyDrive and Dropbox. The WD My Cloud is now available starting at $150 for the 2TB model, while the beefier 3TB and 4TB variants are priced at $180 and $250, respectively.
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WD® GIVES CONSUMERS A CLOUD OF THEIR OWN
With New My Cloud™ Consumers Can Easily Save, Access and Share all of their Photos, Videos and Files from Any Device, Anytime – without Sacrificing Privacy
IRVINE, Calif. – Oct. 2, 2013 – WD®, a Western Digital (NASDAQ: WDC) company and a world leader in storage solutions for the connected life ,today introduced its new My Cloud™ family of personal cloud solutions. WD's My Cloud is a complete solution for users to organize, centralize and secure the digital content from all of their computers and mobile devices and access those files from any device, from anywhere in the world. By simply connecting a My Cloud personal cloud drive to the Internet, consumers get the anywhere, any-device access they can get from the public cloud, without having to pay monthly fees or giving up control of their personal data.
"We believe that there's no place like home for the cloud," said Jim Welsh, executive vice president and general manager of WD's branded products and consumer electronics groups. "Everyone is inundated with thousands of digital files scattered across multiple computers and mobile devices, and controlling that chaos is a challenge. WD's personal cloud is the easiest, most secure and most affordable way for customers to control that chaos, with access to all of their files anywhere, anytime."
Research firm Gartner estimates that the average household will own approximately 3.3 terabytes (TB) of digital content by 2016. In line with this growth of digital content is the explosive growth of Internet-connected devices, with the current U.S. household owning 5.7 connected devices, according to The NPD Group. The convergence of rapid content and device growth requires a new storage paradigm that gives consumers complete control over their digital lives. Personal cloud storage is the new standard, allowing users to keep media and files safe at home on their own physical drive and then access them over the Internet with any PC or Mac® computer or on tablets and smartphones through mobile apps. Using the My Cloud drive, users can share files, stream media and access content anywhere with no monthly fees and feel secure in the knowledge that their cloud resides in their own home under their exclusive control.
"Families are connecting, sharing, syncing, and backing-up numerous mobile devices and computers in their household, with the amount of digital data being created on these devices growing dramatically," said Liz Conner, Senior Research Analyst, Storage Systems, IDC. "Personal cloud is an ideal solution to simplify the complex issue of organizing digital files across various devices so that users can enjoy their digital videos, photos and music on all of their devices."
Streamlined Setup and Backup
Customers can get their personal cloud up and running in minutes with WD's rich web-based user interface for seamless web-guided setup. WD's software auto-detects the drive to make setup simple for novice users. Once the My Cloud drive is setup, customers can easily connect their computers and mobile devices with WD's free desktop and mobile apps. With a Gigabit Ethernet connection and Dual-Core processor, transferring files is blazing fast, allowing customers to quickly centralize all of the digital content scattered across various devices onto My Cloud. With direct file uploads from mobile devices, important files and videos can be safely moved to My Cloud, freeing up valuable space on users' tablets and smartphones.
Customers can also use their My Cloud to back up their computers and digital files. For PC users, WD SmartWare™ Pro software offers options for how, when and where to back up files. Mac users can utilize all the features of Apple® Time Machine® backup software to protect their data.
My Cloud users can store and organize their families' photos, videos, music and important documents in one secure place on the home network. With the new My Cloud desktop app, navigating, controlling and sharing these files from anywhere in the world is simple and intuitive. My Cloud is available in 2 TB, 3 TB, and 4 TB capacities, providing bountiful storage capacity with no monthly payment required. Customers can also attach a compatible USB 3.0 hard drive directly to the USB expansion port on the My Cloud drive and instantly expand their storage capacity.
Additionally, My Cloud serves as a home's digital entertainment hub, storing terabytes of movies and music that can then be streamed to any DLNA™-certified multimedia device such as a WD TV® Live™ media player, as well as smart TVs and gaming consoles.
Accessing the Personal Cloud
Available for iOS® and Android™ devices, the new WD My Cloud mobile app allows users to view photos, stream video and access their files from anywhere on their smartphones or tablets. The mobile app also makes file sharing and collaborating simple and secure, allowing customers to easily email files, share files as a link, and print and open files with third party apps.
Additionally, the My Cloud mobile app integrates major public cloud services so that customers can easily transfer files between their Dropbox™, SkyDrive® and Google Drive™ public cloud accounts.
Price and Availability
The 2 TB and 3 TB My Cloud is currently available at select U.S. retailers and online at the wdstore.com. The 4 TB My Cloud is expected to be available in November. MSRP is $149.99 USD for 2 TB, $179.99 USD for 3 TB and $249.99 USD for 4 TB. The My Cloud mobile app currently is available for download from the App StoreSM and Google PlayTM. A two drive and four drive My Cloud configuration will be available in the future.
Capacity and Compatibility
My Cloud personal cloud storage is available in capacities of 2 TB, 3 TB and 4 TB is compatible with Windows® 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista®, Windows XP, OS X Mountain Lion™, Lion®, Snow Leopard®, as well as DLNA®/UPnP® enabled devices.
WD, a Western Digital company, is a long-time innovator and storage industry leader. As a storage technology pacesetter, the company produces reliable, high-performance hard disk drives and solid state drives. These drives are deployed by OEMs and integrators in desktop and mobile computers, enterprise computing systems, embedded systems and consumer electronics applications, as well as by the company in providing its own storage products. WD's leading storage devices and systems, networking products, media players and software solutions empower people around the world to easily save, store, protect, share and experience their content on multiple devices. WD was established in 1970 and is headquartered in Irvine, Calif. For more information, please visit the company's website at www.wd.com.
Western Digital Corp. (NASDAQ: WDC), Irvine, Calif., is a global provider of products and services that empower people to create, manage, experience and preserve digital content. Its companies design and manufacture storage devices, networking equipment and home entertainment products under the WD, HGST and G-Technology brands. Visit the Investor section of the company's website (www.westerndigital.com) to access a variety of financial and investor information.