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Tuesday, 22 March 2011 14:13

Local storage cloud undercuts Amazon


Macquarie Telecom offshoot Ninefold has launched a public beta version of its local cloud based storage offering which will cost 9.2 cents per Gb per month. Until the end of March however the beta version is being offered free to existing and new clients.

With a primary target of entrepreneurs, start-ups and developers the company is also making the service available to storage hungry 'mums and dads' according to managing director Peter James.

Ninefold started offering locally hosted infrastructure as a service (IaaS) just over a month ago. Again pricing has been key for that service with the entry level IaaS price at 12.3 cents an hour for the smallest instance which is one cpu, 2 GB of ram and operating system - which works out at less than $90 a month.

Now it's offering storage and has 'petabytes' ready to go, according to Mr James. While its main focus remains start-ups and developers, Mr James acknowledged that 'around the web and social media there is a burgeoning amount of data.'

Besides corporates wanting self-managed access to large storage devices the Ninefold storage cloud could be accessed by consumers wanting a local third party storage provider for their music and images.

'That's another market for us and we do have an easy way to transport data for the small office and home office and potentially mums and dads,' Mr James told iTWire, referring to the NinefoldFox extension which allows Mozilla Firefox to be used to upload data to Ninefold's storage cloud.

The company has also posted a couple of YouTube videos which step would-be users through the process of accessing the storage cloud. Ninefold's customers also have access to the cloud storage API for greater flexibility.

How much cheaper than Amazon? Read on

The company has cited Amazon as its key competitive rival for the service, and has certainly priced the offering accordingly. Amazon's comparable storage cloud service starts at 9.3 (US) cents per Gb per month.

All new Ninefold accounts will also receive $50 credit to get started, which can be put to future storage expenses once the open period expires, or to trial other Ninefold services. 

Mr James claimed that the main market differential for the storage cloud service was that 'you can swipe a credit card and be up and running in minutes.' In addition he said the fact that the storage cloud was located in Australia meant that there were fewer issues associated with latency, support, jurisdiction or pricing because of currency fluctuations.

Asked how much storage the company had to sell, Mr James said 'loads - petabytes - of storage ready.'

'The good thing about having Macquarie as our backer is we would like nothing more than to have this filled up because we can scale this rapidly and easily,' he said.

In a media release issued today Mr James said: 'This kind of cloud storage differs from the SAN-based compute storage already offered by other providers in the same way an external hard drive differs from your computer's C drive. It is pure, simple storage, without paying for additional resources you don't need.'

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