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Strato launches competitor to Dropbox - with added privacy
Strato has launched a cloud-based storage service that exploits Germany's strict privacy laws ofr added protection
German hosting company Strato has launched a new, free cloud storage service that the company claimed would be attractive to European customers looking to avoid problems with the US Patriot Act.
HiDrive Free, which complements the paid-for service launched at CeBit last year, will be at a German data centres, ensuring that the service conforms to German privacy law – one of the world’s strictest. In addition, the data centres conform to the ISO27001 security standard, normally used by banks and insurance companies.
The free service, which offers users up to 5 Gigabytes of storage, can be access via a web browser or by smartphone through the HiDrive app, available for Android or Windows Phone 7. The service is not available for iPhone, however, as it has not yet been approved by Apple, according to a company spokeswoman, although she add that talks are on-going.
With HiDrive Free, a new online storage opportunity enters the cloud where users benefit from plenty of storage space to save important documents, holiday pictures, or music collections - in short, everything of value that shouldn’t get lost. And the best thing is, it’s free,” said Damian Schmidt, chief executive officer at Strato.
Strato is set to launch Premium versions of HiDrive free shortly. These paid-for services will offer users between 100 to 500 gigabytes of storage space - HiDrive 100 will be priced at €9.90 and HiDrive 500 at €29.90 per month. The company is also set offer a 5 TB service in the future, although this has yet to be priced. These premium services differ from the existing paid-for HiDrive services as they’re aimed more for consumers rather than small businesses.
Details of the premium services have yet to be finalised so it’s not clear what all the differences are but, according to the Strato spokeswoman, one of the differentiators will be that HiDrive Free services will only be available in Euros while the other paid-for services are in a range of currencies. There will also be opportunities for customers to have several accounts on the same HiDrive Free service.