Storing data in the cloud has been a growth market in the B2B world this year. But the consumer market is heating up, too. Some analysts believe that mobile operators have an opportunity to improve subscriber loyalty by promoting their personal cloud storage (PCS) services.
Consumers are growing familiar with PCS. Over 94% have heard of services like Dropbox, Google Drive and Funambol OneMediHub. Historically, these kinds of services have eased the hassles associated with transmitting and storing data. With the growth in the mobile market, Funambol, which sells white-label personal cloud services for mobile providers, believes that consumers will be looking for simple ways to move data to and from the cloud.
According to the firm’s recent survey, about 21% of consumers are already paying for a PCS. Over half, 68%, say they are satisfied with their PCS and another 24% are very satisfied. Overall, 74% of surveyed consumers said they have an interest in a PCS service being offered by their mobile provider. Once they start using this type of service, they would be less likely to change their mobile provider. Hal Steger, Funambol VP Marketing, notes that "operators face mounting pressure to reduce churn and increase loyalty, and many are considering personal clouds to do both."
To interest consumers in a PCS, providers should be promoting the most sought-after features. These include remote access, backup and the ability to synchronize with multiple devices. On average, people would like to transfer data from up to 4 devices, both mobile and fixed. Current PCS users would also like to have more storage available along with improved security and performance. Mobile operators who want to connect with today’s heavy data users should consider providing and promoting their version of a PCS.[Source: Operator Personal Cloud Storage for Consumers. Funambol.com. 21 Aug. 2012. Web. 28 Aug. 2012]