The Case Against Cloud Computing
While not specifically focused on the Palm Pre or WebOS, an interesting piece has just appeared from PC Magazine questioning the ultimate prospects of the "Cloud". Entitled, "The Case Against Cloud Computing", this PCMag article is written by analyst Tim Bajarin who is also president of research firm Creative Strategies.
In his piece, Mr. Bajarin uses a cautionary personal recollection from twenty years ago to set the stage for an unsettling future where all data is moved from the desktop to the cloud and rendered potentially inaccessible. Bajarin then questions the inherently patched-together nature of the Internet as an unreliable repository for personal and business data, not to mention the ever-increasing threat from "cyber criminals".
The piece lead into the basic questions and concerns many consumers are faced with when transitioning to the cloud, but the piece contains little in the way of real-world examples of Cloud-centric products such as Palm's upcoming Pre or even some Asus EEE netbooks that count a bundled online storage account as complimentary storage space to their device's local hard drive capacity. In addition, it would have been helpful for the article to cite some solid numbers (where available) such as the amount of users who use a web-based e-mail such as Gmail or Hotmail as their primary means of communication would help flesh out the argument that consumers are comfortable with archiving less critical forms of data online.
The PCMag article also serves as a useful reminder that to date, very little in the way of outright promotion for the "cloud" has appeared from either Palm or Sprint. Such material is presumably in the works and will hopefully arrive on the heels of the Pre's official retail availability, as many average consumers likely remain unaware of WebOS' revolutionary cloud-based concept. In fact, the incorrect assumption that the Pre is still a tethered device analogous to the current crop of iTunes/Palm Desktop/BlackBerry Desktop/ActiveSync-connected handheld devices could be a possible contributor to Palm's low ratings in this recent Changewave survey.