I am an Amazon Prime member.
I love the service – I get free 2-day shipping, movies I can download for free and take with me on trips and music I would never buy outright to stream for my toddler, plus a variety of other perks.
The other day, I got an email:
Of course, this is the natural progression of things. In the race to the bottom, whether it’s all-flash storage systems, televisions or electric cars, as commodities (such as SSDs, electrical components, etc) get cheaper and companies jockey for market share, products for consumers get cheaper. In this case, FREE.
Amazon offering free storage for photos is simply the next shot in the war between cloud providers and a way to further take market share from Microsoft, Google, Apple, etc in the race to the bottom of cloud storage.
Which I am TOTALLY fine with, as a consumer. I like free.
But what this deal underscored for me was… how on earth do I move all those thousands of photos of me, my toddler and various other things from my Apple photos to Amazon?
Like any good techie, I Googled it.
And I saw how much of a bear it was going to be. So much so, that even the draw of “free” can’t overcome my reaction of “I have to do what??” Apple photo storage is already cheap enough (and free up to a certain storage capacity). So, as a consumer, I have little motivation to move. This is a good example of “cloud lock in,” in my opinion.
I can’t imagine having to deal with this on an enterprise level as a customer. I’m dealing with maybe GBs of photos. But enterprises? PETABYTES of real, live money making data. So they’d have even LESS incentive to move stuff around, especially when you factor in change control windows, approvals, down time, etc. Then it hit me…
This is a job for… the Data Fabric!
If you’re not a storage person, you likely have no idea what a NetApp is. And if that’s the case, you have less of a notion of what a Data Fabric is.
Even if you are a storage person, you might not know much about the NetApp Data Fabric.
Essentially, it’s this: Avoiding vendor lock-in by giving the owners of data control over their own data by providing a way to move it around seamlessly and quickly across clouds, anywhere, anytime.
There was a pretty effective demo done at NetApp Insight by @NetofromBrazil on this very concept:
But like many things, it takes a use case that personally impacts you to drive that point home – something as simple as “where do I put my photos now?”
Granted, the NetApp Data Fabric won’t help you solve that specific problem, but the same concept applies. It gives data owners the option to actually own their data, as well as where it lives.
Who knew that control would be so valuable?
Also, check out Paul Stringfellow’s post on the Data Fabric: