At Computex 2013, Acer unveiled to us a very odd looking device. Named “Orbe”, it is meant as the data hub for the AcerCloud service. The device has 2TB of storage, and will work with any device running Acer’s cloud storage app or software.
If you’re wondering how the device is different from other cloud storage options, like Drive or Dropbox, the answer is fairly simple. Local file hosting, coupled with the app, creates a peer-to-peer connection with your device. With traditional cloud storage options, our connection is with the server. Essentially, you’re acting as your own cloud storage provider with a device like Orbe.
What’s important to ask is whether or not you care. Cloud storage is very secure, and options like Drive allow you to edit and create documents. By using that system, we gain functionality beyond simple file storage. With Orbe, we simply get file hosting. There are workarounds for editing and file creation, but none as seamless as something like Drive. It also is subject to your data plan and configurations, while Google has a 99.9% up-time. Again, comparing it directly to drive, your only true benefit is amount of storage.
If you’re curious why the device is so odd looking, we have no answer. Perhaps Acer was trying to mimic a cloud. It’s clever, but silly, and not really necessary. If you are really wary of cloud storage, but like the idea, this is a device you should consider. No specs or pricing have been announced yet, but we’ll let you know when they are.