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January 30, 2014

Polkast's Einstein: The Cloud, Only Better

Up until recently, there has been a real gap in the hosted services market for businesses that want the accessibility of the cloud, but without the high cost, lag time and security risks that often come with it. Lucky for these businesses, Polkast is filling in that gap. This week, the company announced the official debut of Einstein, a file virtualization system layered over a secure peer-to-peer (P2P) network, designed specifically for businesses. Einstein offers low prices and increased security compared to cloud and VPN services, while maintaining the same benefits as the cloud that make it such an appealing and powerful business tool.

First of all, Einstein is easy to use. Because it is offered as a download, essentially any computer can become a private cloud. And once it has been installed, you have access to the contents of your entire computer from anywhere, without having to go through the Internet and the cloud to get to it.

“Even for small businesses with only a terabyte or so of data, no matter what the bandwidth is, it will still take a long time to upload using the cloud,” Hong Bui, CEO and founder of Polkast, told TMC (News - Alert).

Because Polkast’s solution is on-premises, there is no need to worry about loading the information somewhere else—it’s all there already, in house. You can transfer large files without the latency of uploading and syncing to the cloud, and you even have the option to cache project folders for offline access. Einstein is up to 25 times faster than a traditional cloud hosting service.

Price is another major concern for businesses. While cloud hosting can be great for small quantities of data and only a handful of users, granting more people access and adding additional storage space to cloud hosted services becomes extremely pricy, and fast. Einstein, on the other hand, lets companies load as much data as they need without the restrictions of cloud-hosted services. It’s also surprisingly affordable compared to cloud-hosted services—about one-tenth the price of Box, for example, according to Bui. Even with discount plans for multiple users on sites like Dropbox (News - Alert), large companies will save a lot of money using Polkast’s Einstein solution.

“We’ve gotten a lot of feedback from both corporate and small businesses, that this is a solution they’ve wanted for years and haven’t been able to get until now,” Bui said.

Security is a hot-button issue today. In industries like healthcare, for instance, data sharing must be kept highly secure and compliant with HIPAA regulations. Medical institutions handle all kinds of confidential and sensitive patient data, and with Polkast (News - Alert), that information never has to leave the firewall. Bui noted that about 80 percent of the time, users tend to access information on Einstein through Wi-Fi only—meaning that 80 percent of the time, users don’t even have to go through public Internet to get the information they need. This makes Einstein inherently more secure than services that rely entirely on public cloud, even when the data is encrypted.

Using Einstein, companies can cut out the middle man, giving them complete control over their sharing platform—what goes on it and who sees it. With traditional cloud, “if you make it super secure, it can become super costly,” Bui said. Not so with Polkast. Without additional costs, Einstein gives companies the ability to hand pick the devices authorized for access, and companies can even control how much information certain devices are able to see and modify.

Image via Shutterstock

Essentially, Polkast has built a mobile device management solution right into the platform. Einstein also keeps a track log of every device that accesses information, so it’s easy to trace who has seen what, and when. For medical professionals and any other company dealing with secure data, this kind of accountability is vital. 

Polkast’s solution has already been previewed by a number of big-name corporations, with thousands of employees and huge volumes of data. These corporations had been relying on a patchwork of cloud hosting and other services to house all of their data and make it accessible to so many people, but with Polkast they can finally streamline their operations. The response Polkast has received for its new Einstein solution has been overwhelmingly positive.

“A lot of our clients have said, ‘This makes so much more sense, why did we even bother using other solutions in the first place?’” Bui added.

The cloud has been a game-changer in the way businesses share and transfer information. It gives companies the flexibility and convenience of holding files in a central location, which can be accessed from just about anywhere. But the cloud has its downsides, and as companies make the shift towards virtualization, it’s important to remember that the cloud is not the only option.

As Bui sees it, “We’re going to see a hybrid world evolve, but the great thing for consumers and businesses is that now they have options for choose from.”

With the proliferation of cloud hosting, and its popularity, businesses have finally come to understand the cloud, as well as its inefficiencies and the ways in which companies want to see the cloud evolve. Polkast, as Bui says, has been able to respond to companies’ wishes and innovate along those lines, producing a truly one-of-a-kind solution businesses will be hard-pressed to ignore.  

Edited by Ryan Sartor

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