Hal Steger : Thinking Out Cloud
Hal Steger
Vice President of Worldwide Marketing at Funambol. 20+ years of marketing & product management experience at high-growth, innovative global software companies.
| This blog is about personal cloud solutions, technology, trends and market developments. Its scope is to comment on and discuss several aspects of personal clouds.

Experience-Centric

While search slideshare (now LinkedIn slideshare), I saw this slide, which sums up customer expectations as well as a conversation I...

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NFV Vendor Challenges Part 1

We’ve all likely seen the Gartner hype cycle for emerging technologies curve.  I remember many, many years ago when I first saw...

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Clinton's BYOD Phones, E-mail Server May Achieve Bin Laden's Goal

One of Osama Bin Laden’s goals was to assassinate president Obama in order to get Joe Biden promoted to president. Said Bin...

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The Importance of a Software Media Server/Media Resource Broker to Handle Diverse Multimedia Resource Requirements in a VoLTE Network

It would be nice sometimes to live in a bubble where you would only have to deal with what was in...

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CyberFlow Analytics Detects Cybersecurity Breach Anomalies

Security experts agree – there is absolutely no way to ensure your network is 100% safe from cybercriminals – if they really...

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Fiber Play: NTELOS Bought by Shentel

It is all about fiber. Whether it is fiber-to-the-home or fiber lit buildings, the bankers love the word fiber. (I will...

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3 Things You Need to Grow

Jim Collins wrote Good to Great in 2001. Some of those companies no longer exist. But the things that Collins talks...

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A false sense of (cloud) security

August 26, 2015

Recently, I was home, the sun was shining, there were fluffy white clouds in a deep blue sky (really), birds were chirping, neighbor children were in backyards whooping it up and having fun, it’s a safe place. For a moment, though, I thought about how easy it would be for someone who was motivated to break in to our house or others on our block, particularly when people weren’t around. Fwiw, we have home security, we lock doors and keep windows shut, police patrol the area and neighbors look out for each other, yet break-ins are a fact of life.

Security is a state of mind, something many people take for granted.

Are You Phony or Cloudy?

July 31, 2015

This may seem like a trick question, but in a sea of clickbait and nano-attention spans where there is a raging battle for eyeballs for a split second lest your mind wander, this corny yet serious riddle hopefully does the trick.

Let’s start with explanations. A “phony” (phone-y) is a smartphone user. A “cloudy”, in contrast to being overcast and glum, is a smartphone user who improves their life via the cloud – er, what?

Best Practices to Increase Adoption of Operator Personal Cloud Services

July 16, 2015

Here is an open letter to marketers of operator personal cloud services. Although this might seem to be of interest to a limited audience, it contains insights that could be valuable to people who want to better understand the intricacies of the personal cloud market or of marketing mobile services via carriers.

Say you work for a mobile operator that offers a white-label personal cloud service. To start with, it is important to understand why your organization is doing this, and there are several reasons.

Revisiting the Business Case for a White-label Personal Cloud Solution: mid-2015 edition

July 1, 2015

“The more things change, the more they stay the same.” (from a French proverb)

As personal cloud services evolve, it is worthwhile to periodically look at the financial model behind self-branded (white-label) solutions.

This is relevant as personal cloud services offer more free storage as well as more storage for paying users. This makes it a better value for users, while raising questions about how providers make money.

Mid-2015 Personal Cloud Market Highlights & Predictions

June 30, 2015

As the dust settles on the halfway mark of 2015, the personal cloud market continues to surge. Here are important events that occurred in the first half of the year and predictions for the second half.

Major industry milestones in the first half of 2015 include:

  • Box went public, and while its stock price has varied, which is common post-IPO, its company valuation has held at a high level. There remains a large need for companies of all sizes and in many industries to leverage the cloud as an important platform for file sync & share.

Why a good personal cloud app is better than your smartphone's gallery and camera roll (aka how to avoid running out of storage on your phone)

June 30, 2015

When I show our personal cloud app to people, they sometimes think it is just a glorified media gallery or camera roll on their phone as it has all of their phone’s pictures and videos. But a closer look shows it has ALL of their pictures and videos, not just from their phone but from everywhere they want, such as their PC or social site. It also has their important digital files and music in one place.

There are several reasons to use a good personal cloud app in addition to the gallery/camera roll - consider:

  • Have you run out of storage on your phone and had to delete things so you can take more pictures/videos or download things?

Game Over? Game On In the Personal Cloud Market

June 2, 2015

Google recently announced that its new Photos service provides unlimited* cloud storage. The asterisk? Google Photos provides ‘good enough’ quality; high-res pictures and videos might see a drop in quality. For users concerned about quality, they can pay to retain the original resolution.

What is your digital life worth?

April 15, 2015

This post is not about insurance or the meaning of life, digital or otherwise. Rather, it is an attempt to help people understand the importance of securing their personal content in the cloud. Disclaimer: I work for a company that provides personal cloud solutions. Despite this, I firmly believe that almost anyone who uses smartphones, laptops and other mobile devices can greatly benefit from doing this.

Personal Cloud Goes Mainstream (warning: 'mature' humor)

November 4, 2013

How do you know when something has attained 'tipping point' status and reached into the mainstream consciousness?

How about when a Saturday Night Live skit makes a semi-obscure reference to someone's personal cloud, as in the following (warning, this would probably be rated PG for some semi-mature content):



Although the skit references a certain company's personal cloud service (which shall go unnamed, although it is pretty obvious), we still like how it calls attention to another use for a personal cloud (even if it involves snooping on someone's personal life, and not by the NSA).

Speaking of the NSA, I saw the other day that someone got in trouble for selling a coffee cup online that had the seal of the NSA with a caption underneath that read, 'The only branch of government that listens' (or something like this). They got in trouble for using the NSA seal without permission, ostensibly.

8 of the Top Mobile Operators Deploy Personal Clouds

September 25, 2013

Having worked with personal clouds from their outset (before they were called personal clouds, I can say with first-hand knowledge that it is virtually impossible to get accurate market data about how many people are really using personal clouds.

This is because the companies that provide personal clouds are either very large or very private and they generally do not want to disclose detailed user stats. If you pay close attention, or you have a wide network of spies or friends in low places, it is possible to glean periodic glimpses of what various companies are doing, such that it is possible to make pretty good educated guesses about what is really going on in the market.

Today, my company, Funambol, published a report on how 8 of the largest mobile operators in the world have deployed or are launching a personal cloud service based on our company's solution. These operators collectively have more than a billion subscribers. Although a fraction of their subscribers are currently using their personal cloud services, the clear trend is that for operators that have been to market the longest, they are getting significant user uptake.



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