2 online storage services vie for your attention

One from the controversial Kim Dotcom

If you're looking for a boatload of free online storage, two companies-including one from MegaUpload founder Kim Dotcom--are trying to gain visibility in a crowded market by offering 50 GB of free storage as bait.

Let's start with Mega, the new online storage company launched this week by Kim Dotcom, whose previous venture, MegaUpload, was shut down by the government last year amid charges of abetting piracy. Ever defiant, Dotcom decided to launch a new service and pulled it off this weekend, offering 50 GB of free storage and attracting one million new users in 24 hours, which temporarily brought down the service.

Mega uses encryption to protect the files and claims the only way to retrieve them is with the password in your brain. Mega defended the encryption in a post on the Mega blog, attempting to answer a wave of criticism about it. It's not exactly a trivial matter either, considering Dotcom's first venture was seized by the government.

The critics could be on to something. I'm not certain that I would trust my files on the Mega site knowing full well that the United States Government has Dotcom's businesses firmly in its sights, but apparently 50 GB of free storage is a powerful lure for many people, and there are probably a number of people who want to show support for Dotcom.

If you're looking for a less controversial service offering free 50GB storage accounts, then check out MediaFire. It released a new Android app this week, giving Android users mobile access to those files on the go. They also have an iOS app.

In a statement, Derek Labian, MediaFire CEO, said he recognized the importance of mobile access with a full range of file management tools. "Users today demand the tools to not only access their content on the go, but do many of the same tasks traditionally performed on desktop computers," he said.

I would say that the mobile access component is essential actually, and given that Android is the most popular mobile phone operating system out there, this is long overdue.

For more information:
- see the Mega site
- see the MediaFire press release

Related Articles:
Megaupload case spotlights data ownership issues in the cloud
Return Megaupload data, says EFF