Mega has been stealing the spotlight when it comes to new cloud storage services, but it’s actual usability has been sort of crappy so far. Meanwhile, in Kim Dotcom’s gargantuan shadow, BitTorrent is trying it’s hand at “cloud” storage too with BitTorrent Sync, and it just might be the Mega that Mega wants to be.
Where Mega’s big hook/gimmick is encryption, BitTorrent Sync’s is, well, BitTorrent. And that could stand to be a pretty big advantage; BitTorrent has other things going for it aside from the whole piracy thing, namely speed. It’s pretty much the way to download large files, copyrighted or not. Sync offers the same shared folder functionality Mega does. And encryption? Well, you can do it yourself if you want. It’s safer that way anyway.
It’s important to note that while Sync will kinda-sorta function the way a cloud storage service does, it is not actually cloud storage. Instead, the files in your drive will be sprinkled among the devices with access to that drive. The upside is that the limit of your drive is only limited by the space on your collective devices. Also, no third-party has access to those files, freeing Sync from the need of the kind of “see-no-evil” encryption Mega has. But you’re also not getting any free space, and if it’s just you and your one computer, it won’t be much help.
When it comes to creating a communal backup drive of whatever-kind-of-files between a whole bunch of devices, however, Sync could be fantastic. You can your friends want to share a big ol’ cyber-closet stuffed with everybody’s collection of goodies? Look no further. But how it holds up in practice will only be clear once it launches for real. As for now, you can sign up for pre-alpha access, but BitTorrent stresses the service still very preliminary (read: buggy). But it may not be long before using BitTorrent is more than just leeching from strangers on the internet. [TorrentFreak]