DataPod is a new service that was Demo’d this week. It doesn’t look like the commercial version is quite ready for primetime, but their site indicates it will be ready soon – prospective users can sign up for updates and a discount here.
The underlying technology for DataPod is a peer-to-peer network with SSL encryption for the data being transmitted. The idea is that a user with multiple computers, for instance one at the office and one at home, could use DataPod to keep their files, email, address book, favorites, etc. in synch with one another. I am not sure if both computers have to be running all the time, but when updates happen at one location, they are automatically sent to the other.
Further, users can share portions of their data with other DataPod users, thereby allowing certain files and folders to stay in synch between partners or other colleagues. I am not sure how the software handles conflicts, though, for instance if one user updates a file while offline then connects and finds that another user has updated the same file.
The last major feature is the ability for a user to log in to a secure website from any computer with Internet access to access their synchronized data. This could provide quick access to links and files from any location while traveling.
There is, however, one potential pitfall for the technology. Businesses may find this product to be a HUGE security hole – allowing an employee to transfer sensitive business data outside the office, possibly even to a public computer through the web interface. Given that fact, they may limit users’ access to the service to just senior management or partners. In the end, though, this product is one to watch, and it could provide help to small organizations looking for the ability to work from home without lugging around a laptop.
Here are some links to other sites that have discussed DataPod recently: