Many of the people out there who have chosen to “cut the cable” — an expression meaning to drop your cable provider, often replacing them with an online streaming service of some kind — have done so by using Boxee. Boxee as a company has been around for a few years now, and even though their service and hardware offerings have grown, the basis of their business is still a set top box that allows one to stream Netflix, YouTube and other content providers (think Apple TV).
The reason we’re talking about Boxee today, however, has nothing to do with their main product. We’re talking about Boxee because just yesterday they announced that they are breaking into the cloud storage/sharing market with their new app Cloudee.
Besides the name, which naturally draws the attention of cloud storage aficionados (read: cloud nerds), Cloudee acts a lot like Dropbox for videos. It’s not meant for cloud backup, which you might expect given that it’s an app, but what it is meant for is giving you a way to upload and share all of the videos you take with your iOS device via the cloud.
Boxee have made it very clear in their descriptions and the interviews they’ve given on the matter that Cloudee is not meant to be a Dropbox replacement or even a Dropbox competitor. They simply saw a gap in the market as regards uploading and sharing smartphone and tablet videos through the cloud that they thought needed filling.
That being said, Boxee has big plans for the cloud, and could be the first of the big streaming content companies to make major inroads into the market. Supposedly, Cloudee is just the beginning. A first step into cloud storage that allows you to access your video from anywhere, on all your devices (assuming you’re an iOS junkie like me). The next step is unknown, and mostly based on speculations due to the following statement:
We believe more of our video watching will shift towards on demand and secondary screens, which will mean more video coming from the cloud.
Personally, I choose to look at this as a positive: as more (and more diverse) companies join the cloud it expands our perception of the cloud’s functionality. Beyond just storage, the cloud becomes a massive shared computer of sorts, and even though that is a bit of a nightmare when it comes to security (this is why Mauricio stresses encryption so often) it makes for a very interested connected world experience.
Currently Cloudee is in private beta — which you can sign up for here — and is entirely free with no caps or limits. But that won’t last forever: Cloudee will introduce premium accounts after the initial release is over so take advantage of the unlimited uploading now because if you’ve surpassed their cap when that time comes you’ll have to pay for premium to upload any more.
For more info on Cloudee head over to The Verge for their hands on look at the app, or click here to get your name on that list I mentioned. Oh, and if you read the title of this article and thought “what the heck is Dropbox!?” then you should probably head over here to find out more about the top 10 free cloud storage services of 2012.
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