Pros and Cons of the Cloud

Pro’s

Synced information

This is one of the nicest benefits of using software or devices that are internet connected is that information will stay synchronized between your different devices. This includes pictures, contacts, phone messages, apps, search history, and the list goes on and on. If you don’t have this synchronization, then you will manually have to transfer data between your devices.

Cloud storage

Cloud storage can be a great way to backup your information, or store more data then your computer can hold. The cost of cloud storage has dropped drastically over the last 5 years, and is now easily affordable. There are many options when it comes to cloud storage including Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, Amazon, and the list goes on. There are also different options when it comes to cloud storage, since some services are built as exclusively backup software, vs. online hard drives.

Information

Another major pro of the cloud is what companies like Google and Amazon can do with the information you allow them access. Companies like these have spent a tremendous amount of effort developing smarter devices that use the cloud to give you information that can better aid you in your day to day life. The Amazon Alexa devices are a great example of these types of devices.

Powerful computing

With the rise of faster internet, it has now made it possible for cloud computing to be a reality. So instead of having to process all of the information on your actual computer, you could potentially be able to have the computing power being done on the cloud. This can be super beneficial for people who need to render large video projects, or for people wanting to game. Google just announced their new cloud gaming platform called Stadia, which will allow people to run games on any device that has fast internet and a Chrome browser. This will allow people to utilize the power of cloud computing to play games. This is something even a few years ago would not have been possible.

Cons

While there are many amazing benefits to using the cloud, there are also some drawbacks, here are a few of the biggest cons.

Security

This is always going to be an issue when you put information on the internet, or in the cloud, then you run the risk of potentially getting hacked and having that information stolen. Obviously, this is possible if you have important documents in a safe in your home, but this is much less likely. Large online companies have worked hard to ensure that customer data is protected by encryption, however, there is always the chance that you could have your information stolen. So it is important to be aware of this, and if you have information that is super sensitivities, then it may be a good idea to keep this off of the cloud.

Internet connection

Another major con with using all cloud-connected devices, or storage, is that they have to have an internet connection to access your information, or even use the device. In some cases, you may need a very fast internet connection. So if you are either in an area that only has slow internet, or you often need to access information when you aren’t online, then you will have to avoid using cloud devices or storage, since you won’t be able to use them to their fullest extent without internet. More and more devices have wireless internet built in, and your phone is probably able to create a wifi hotspot, so you may be able to avoid this issue of no internet.

Longevity

Another potential issue is that a device that connects to a server (cloud) may lose functionality in the future. For example, let’s take Samsung’s smart refrigerators. They are able to connect to the internet so you can see what food you have so you know what your food you need to buy. However, in 10 years will Samsung still be supporting the older models? A traditional fridge can be used for an almost indefinite amount of time, and many people do use old appliances. So if you are someone that uses stuff for a long period of time, it is a good idea to avoid devices that are super dependent on the cloud for functionality.

Overall the cloud has brought a tremendous amount of benefits, and has many the majority of peoples lives much better. Just make sure to understand what the cloud is, and what using it will mean.