How to Get More Battery Life from Your Device on the Go

How to Get More Battery Life from Your DevicePicture this: you’re half way through your 5 hour flight and are happily catching up on Game of Thrones on your Samsung Galaxy Tab when your low battery icon pops up. We’ve all been there… maybe for you it was a work presentation and you were reading from notes you saved on your iPhone when up pops your low battery symbol and before you know it your chances of being considered for that promotion are destroyed. Or maybe it wasn’t that dramatic. Perhaps you were in the middle of catching up with an old friend and couldn’t finish your phone conversation.

Fortunately, there are many ways to increase your device’s battery life. One solution is to purchase an external battery case for your smartphone; in most cases these can almost double your battery life. These types of cases are very popular with Apple users but are also available for many Android devices too. Or, you can follow these tips to increase battery life without spending a dime.

1. Take Care of Your Battery

One of the best ways to increase battery life is to keep your battery in good condition. Make sure you keep the area where your battery plugs into your device squeaky clean so that it always gets a good connection. Keep your device cool and don’t let it get above 95 degrees Fahrenheit, but don’t let it get too cold, and limit the amount you use it in cooler weather. If you’re often caught with a weak battery, consider carrying a spare.

2. Consider Your Connections

Of course, it’s nice to have the latest and greatest technology and to be permanently connected to everything you love. But One of the nice things about ll these smart devices is that they’re always on and ready to connect you to the world awith a swipet a moments notice, but always-on connectivity takes a toll on your battery because your device syncs, tracks and updates something constantly. When it comes to juice, GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC and mobile data tend to be the most thirsty services. So, when you don’t need them, turn them off. If you must have location data turned on, set it to use cellular data or Wi-Fi instead of GPS. However, if you use Wi-Fi a lot, it’s better to set it to “Always on during sleep,” as that will use less battery power than reconnecting every time you wake the phone. You’ll save quite a bit of battery power and the only tradeoff is that you’ll need to take a few seconds to turn on these services manually when you need them. The tricky part is remembering to turn them off!

3. Turn off Push Notifications

Unless you just can’t live without reading everyone’s Facebook comments the minute they’re posted, turn off push notifications to conserve energy. Also, disable location-based services when you aren’t using them.

4. Tweak Your Settings

Another great way to increase battery life is to tweak your settings. Keep the screen as dim as is comfortable for your eyes, change the display settings so that the display times out quickly, and turn off live wallpaper. While you’re in settings, double-check to ensure you have the latest software, and update it if necessary.

5. Check Your Apps

Do you have any idea how many apps never actually turn off and just sit there running in the background, using up your device’s memory and battery life? Pretty much all of them. When you’re done using an app, make sure you close it rather than letting it run in the background. Also, keep your apps up to date. Developers update them for a reason, and quite often those reasons are battery and memory optimizations. While you’re checking your apps, delete any that you don’t use to stop them from draining your battery (or taking up space).

If you follow these tips to increase battery life, you’ll find yourself with a dead phone much less frequently. You’ll be able to survive that flight, nail that presentation, and keep in touch with your loved ones more often. Do you have any tips that work well for extending your battery life?  Please share in the comments section below!

Posted in electronics, Tips and Tricks | Tagged | Leave a comment

Fun with Fido: Vacationing with Pets

Summer is the perfect time to enjoy a long, well-deserved vacation, not only for you but your dogs as well. Fido and Fluffy don’t want to be stuck at home with a stranger or left in a kennel while you’re off having fun. They’d much rather be by your side, smelling new scents, meeting new people and exploring the world along with you.

Whether you’re hitting the casinos in Vegas or enjoying the beaches in Hawaii, there’s much more to enjoying a vacation with your dog (or even your cat) than strapping them into an adorable seat-belt harness and putting the car into drive. You also need to consider many other aspects of your trip and how they will affect your pet. Luckily, there’s an app for that.

Pet Trackers

Have you ever heard the expression, “Hope for the best, but expect the worst?” It’s this way of thinking that helped establish pet tracker apps for big and small dog breeds. Apps like Tagg and Tractive are available for both Android and Apple users. With these apps, you attach a small tracker to your dog’s collar, then easily track his movement via GPS on the Android or iOS application. These apps help you keep your pets safe, even if they decide to go out and explore on their own. You’ll easily be able to find them quickly using just your phone or tablet.

Great Dog-Friendly Vacation Spots

Finding great dog-friendly vacation spots isn’t as easy as you might think. You may want to visit a location that doesn’t feature the amenities your dog needs, like hotels that allow dogs, a nearby dog park or an outdoor restaurant. To find the right vacation destination for both you and Fluffy, the right app can come in handy.

Fortunately, there are several apps to help with this. Dog Park Finder Plus gives you instant access to all the dog parks near your area, now matter where you happen to be at the moment. It costs only $1.99 but is only available to iPhone and iPad users.

Seeing the words, “no dogs allowed,” can break your heart when you’re a dog mom or dad. If you’re looking for pet-friendly hotels, bars, shopping and more, you need to do your research. While Yelp is doing a better job at helping you find these places, a search for a dog-friendly shopping mall may still bring up a mall that happens to serve hot dogs. You need something better, like BringFido. This app lets you search different areas and see what is available for your dogs to enjoy while you’re on vacation.

Doggy Day Care Apps

Even though you love your dog (or cat,) there may be times on your vacation when you just need some time to yourself. Your dog may have passed crate training 101 with flying colors, but that doesn’t mean you want to leave him in the hotel room by himself for long periods at a time. That’s where the right app for doggy daycare comes in. Some applications are location-specific, but others, like Rover and, help you find pet sitters, kennels and daycare in locations across the United States.

Whether you’re flying to a beautiful tropical island or driving to your favorite lake for a few weeks, don’t leave your pooch behind. There are plenty of applications you can access via your smartphone or tablet that will make traveling with dogs and cats much easier. Is there an app you use that we didn’t mention? Comment below and include a bit of information so other pet lovers can enjoy the app too!

Posted in Tips and Tricks | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Create the Ideal Back to School Backpack

Back to School

It’s that time of year again. The smell of newly sharpened pencils is in the air. Teenagers are desperately trying to put together outfits that will make them look “cool” on their first day back. That’s right; it’s time for school again. Whether you’re a parent, a high school student or a college student, you have to make sure everything is prepared for the coming school year. Finding the right school supplies, fun lunch boxes and gadgets can help the year start off right. Check out these back to school supplies you shouldn’t have to live without.

Buying the Right Laptop or Tablet

If you’re a high school or college student, a laptop is one of the best back to school gadgets you can buy. As essential as pencils and paper these days, the right laptop can help you excel in the classroom. You can’t just buy any laptop, however. You need one that fits your needs and will enhance learning. Look for laptops with these qualities:

  • They need to be portable. A good student laptop is between 11 and 14 inches in size.
  • Consider the OS options carefully when searching for laptops and notebooks. For young students, Chromebooks are an excellent choice, while OS X is appropriate for iPhone users and Windows is best for productivity.
  • The battery life of a laptop can help ensure success all day long. Aim for a battery life of at least six hours, if not more.

Laptops aren’t the only technology making it into the classroom, however. Tablets are just as likely to be on a school equipment list as pencils for most any age student. Tablets are small, lightweight and portable, and how students are going to use the tablets determines which ones are the smarter purchases. For instance, some tablets, like the Surface Pro 3 and iPad Air 2, practically eliminate the need for a laptop by offering the same app functionality and word processing. Many tablets also work well in combination with a computer or laptop. These tablets can be used to take notes or read e-textbooks, but may not be able to do everything a laptop does. For the younger set, such as grade school level there are a number of tablets designed specially for that age group and focus on teaching subjects such as basic math, spelling and reading skills.

Best Apps for Students

When it comes to creating the ideal back to school backpack, sometimes it’s the small things that matter the most. Applications on iPads, tablets and eReaders may not take up much room, but they can ensure you’re prepared for class and make homework go a bit more smoothly. A free note-taking app like Evernote can help keep track of all assignments and pertinent information for each class. Dropbox is an app that organizes all documents and share folders securely and easily with others for free. My Study Life keeps track of your workload across multiple devices and platforms, so you never miss another exam or forget when a homework assignment is due. All of these apps are available for Windows, Apple and Android devices.

Make Back to School Fun

Filling a backpack with gadgets and school equipment that will ensure success is probably your first priority, but that doesn’t mean every school supply should be serious. Have a bit of fun with cool, unique items. Fun lunch boxes sporting favorite cartoon characters or movie heroes can be a fantastic way to incorporate a healthy, well-rounded meal into the day. This also gives students a way to make new friends with similar interests. The same idea can apply to school books as well. Book covers offer a way to express interests while protecting books and giving you peace of mind.

Are you looking forward to back-to-school time? Leave us a comment and let us know what you think the best back to school gadgets are, what you plan on purchasing for yourself or your child and how you think each one will help ensure academic and social success.

Posted in Tech, Tips and Tricks | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Tech Tips for the Ultimate Summer Party

Now is the time to sit on the back porch and enjoy a tall glass of cold iced tea (or perhaps something a bit stronger.) The hot sun beating down encourages trips to the lake, lazy days by the swimming pool and time spent with sand between your toes. You don’t want to do all that alone, though, do you? What’s a fun summer day without the company of some good friends?

Have no fear, technology is coming to your rescue. With portable Bluetooth speakers, a tablet, a digital camera and a home projector on your side, you can create an ultimate summer bash no one will want to miss.

Turn up the Noise

What’s a party without music? Using a traditional music player outdoors requires you to set the device near an electrical outlet. If you’re having fun at the lake or even in your backyard, this isn’t always possible. Using a smartphone won’t work either, even if you make a playlist that rocks.

The best choice for your outdoor summer party is to use a wireless device that can amplify your music. A portable Bluetooth speaker, like the Beats by Dr. Dre Pill 2.0 can connect wirelessly to your smart device from up to 30 feet away. You can listen to music for up to five hours with this speaker, and you don’t have to miss any calls. The speaker features a built-in button for answering phone calls.

How to Make a Photo Booth

Whether you’re celebrating your recent graduation or just enjoying the beauty of summer with your friends, these will be moments you’ll take with you with for the rest of your life. Capture these moments with a DIY photo booth. Learning how to make a photo booth isn’t difficult, either. Using a camera like the Nixon Coolpix and digital cameras with remote shutter technology, along with a tripod stand and backdrop, guests can take their own pictures, leaving you free to enjoy the party. Add a flattering glow by including a spotlight and a photography umbrella. If you opt against this, consider turning the camera flash on for the best results.

Once the party is over, connect your digital camera to your Samsung Galaxy tablet wirelessly and transfer the picture files. You can then create fun collages and share the images online with friends that attended.

Drive-in Movies

Who doesn’t love the idea of sitting on the hood of a car (or even sitting in a lawn chair) on a cool summer night while watching a movie? When it comes to summer parties, this is an excellent way to put on a show for your friends. To make the experience unforgettable, you’ll need a home theater projector and a large blank area, like a garage door, or an area where you can hang a large white sheet.

Using wireless outdoor speakers with your projectors gives your guests the ability to watch the movie while listening to it in crystal-clear sound. There’s nothing more frustrating than attempting to watch a movie and not being able to hear it, after all.

Love these ultimate summer party ideas and tech tips? We’d love to hear what your summer plans are and do you plan on using technology to create an awesome summer bash. Leave us a comment below and let us know.

Posted in Entertainment, Tech, Tips and Tricks | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Summer Vacay Tech and Travel Tips

Summer Vacation Tech and Travel Gadgets

Summer is in full swing and it’s time to take that relaxing or adventurous getaway you have worked so hard to deserve. Before you make your escape and leave your coworkers at the daily grind, take the time to figure out what you need to bring along to make your vaycay truly legendary. Trust us to be your summer vacation planner with the fun gadget and app ideas to help you to get the best (for less) out of your time away.

Pics or it Didn’t Happen

You need proof of your exploits or the shameless luxury you enjoy on a trip so you can brag on social networks or around the office. Make sure you get a camera with the highest resolution you can find so everyone watching back home can see every bead of condensation dripping down the outside of your margarita glass. For extra fun, you can strap your camera to your hat or over your chest to capture the gorgeous details flying by as you drive, swim, bike or even skydive on your unforgettable adventure. Keep the camera rolling to show off how many heads you turn as you stroll down a lively avenue for a night on the town.

Apps for Fun and Convenience

Wanna skip the lines for that bone-rattling roller coaster? How about making sure you pay the lowest price for your room? Check out the app store that comes with your tablet or smartphone for apps offered by the places you plan to visit, or for booking apps such as Expedia or These apps for travel are almost always free and offer you special deals and discounts that you would otherwise miss out on. Research stories from savvy visitors who braved the unknown, so you don’t have to, get deals emailed to you regularly and more. Your best bet for finding these apps is either an iPad or Samsung Galaxy Tablet. You can easily make back what you spend on them by getting the lowest price on hotels, fare, and admissions, so you can feel that much better as you race past everyone else sweating away in line because you were smart enough to use your apps to get a VIP pass.

Indispensable Accessories

Depending on where you’re heading, you might need some way to adapt your chargers to a new outlet type. Don’t make it all the way to the hotel to find out that your phone’s going to die before you even get a chance to take your first beachside selfie. Grab any spare USB cords, chargers, adapters and anything else you need before you leave so you can save your regrets for the morning after you go out partying. We can’t save you from a motel that doesn’t come with the same TV and stereo that it shows on its website, but we can help you find portable audio solutions, such as Bluetooth wireless headphones that let you chill with your tunes no matter where you’re at.

Distractions for Relaxation

You may be on the road for a while to get to your ideal vacay spot. Keep yourself entertained while you drive, ride the train or fly to your destination with a tablet or other media device. You can engross yourself in the latest bestselling novel instead of the kid who keeps running up and down the aisle. We’ve got you covered because we can show you where to buy a Kindle cheap, so you can save your cash to spend once you hit your favorite night spots. If you have your children in tow you can keep them out of your hair by loading up their phones with all sorts of games so you can focus on spending time with your partner. We’d like to consider ourselves friends, or at least that one person you can always count on to give you a solid recommendation, so go ahead and leave us a comment or two about your favorite tips for travel and maybe we’ll see you on the beach!

Posted in Tech, Tips and Tricks | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Where will your DealCow Roam? Summer 2015 Sweepstakes!



Thanks to everyone who participated in the sweepstakes! The winners above were randomly drawn. We hope everyone had an awesome summer! Thanks for sharing your summertime photos with us!

There are so many awesome things about summer! Longer days filled with fun in the sun, family vacations and laid back BBQ’s to name a few. We’re adding to the awesomeness with the Summer DealCow Sweepstakes!

Snap a pic of your CowBoom DealCow participating in your favorite summer activity and share in one of three ways:


Follow +Tweet your photo to @CowBoom with #SDCSweepstakes



Follow + Instagram your photo, tag @CowBoom with #SDCSweepstakes




Like + Post to our Facebook app with #SDCSweepstakes


We can’t wait to see where your DealCow roams!

No DealCow? No Problem! Print the Digital DealCow here. We advise taping it to a popsicle stick for clever ways to insert their cuteness into photos!


No purchase necessary. Ends at 1:59 PM on 8/31/15. See Official Rules for photo guidelines and full entry details.

Posted in CowBoom | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

What is Wearable Tech?

Girl exercising with smart watch










A few years ago, the smartphone was the hottest innovation to date. Today, however, technology has skyrocketed, giving average Joes the chance to experience a world once known to only Marty McFly. While many are still waiting for the day when they can own a hoverboard, wearable tech toys are here and making lives so much easier.

From gadgets that track your every move to gizmos that let you talk into your watch like James Bond, wearable tech is more than just the latest digital watch or pair of headphones. This type of technology refers to items that connect to your smartphone via Bluetooth, use internet connections and feature several smart sensors that help you achieve certain goals. For example: connecting more with others, staying active or losing some weight. While most are worn around the wrist, there are some that can be hung around your neck or even clipped to your body. They often resemble jewelry but do so much more. Want to know what kinds of gadgets and gizmos are out there waiting for you? Keep reading to learn more.

Types of Wearable Gadgets

Smart Watches

Purchasing a smart watch isn’t about telling time. That is simply an after-thought when you see everything these watches can do. Smart watches are worn on the wrist and connect to your smartphone or tablet, typically via Bluetooth. These give you the opportunity to see and interact with your digital life without have to actually use a larger device. Some smart watches, like the Pebble Smart Watch , connects to Android or Apple devices. This type of watch can be used with a variety of apps, giving you the opportunity to play games, tell time or act as wearable activity trackers. The watch will vibrate when you have a notification or text, which you can then see on the mini screen.

The Samsung Gear 2 Neo, on the other hand, is only compatible with certain Samsung devices. It does let you receive and send texts, respond to notifications and call individuals using the watch. You can also use this particular device to check the weather, play videos and listen to music.

Fitness Trackers

At the end of a long workout, would you like to know how many steps you’ve taken, how many calories you’ve burned and track your weight? A fitness tracker can provide you with all this information in a wearable form. We aren’t talking about bulky gadgets and gizmos featuring cords that have to be connected to your phone and get in the way of your exercise routine, though. The Jawbone Up, for instance, is a wristband that tracks your every move. Each step you take, along with the distance you travel, is monitored and displayed by this technology. Another option is the Fitbit Zip, a wireless activity tracker that monitors your exercise and relays it to a compatible smart device. This tracker can be clipped to your clothing or placed in your pocket, so it’s out of the way when you’re working out.

Head-Mounted Displays

When it comes to the coolest wearable tech and must have gadgets, head-mounted displays (HMD) must be mentioned. This technology is worn on your head and over your eyes. The Oculus Rift is a popular option, giving you the opportunity to experience a virtual reality without ever having to leave your home.

Benefits of the Best Wearable Tech

The best wearable tech comes with many advantages to your everyday life. From helping you lose weight to helping you connect with others, these devices can provide you with the technology you need to succeed.

Do you have a favorite piece of wearable tech that you can’t live without? Drop us a comment and let us know. If not, why not treat yourself and take advantage of some great deals. Click here to shop for awesome deals on geeky gear.

Posted in Tech | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Save Moo-La on the Go

Sale and Discount signpost

Most of us have two things in common. We love our gadgets, and we love to save Moo-La while on the go. Right? Of course its right, who doesn’t like to save a buck or two? So, what if we told you it’s possible to put your smartphone to work raking in those savings.  Do we have your attention now? Great! Let’s get to work.

How many loyalty cards do you own?

There are a number of apps available for your smartphone to help you save Moo-La on the go, so let’s begin with that stack of loyalty cards you have in your wallet or on your keychain. How would you like to store them all in one place? That’s right no more fumbling for a card or remembering which phone number you used.

Two apps stand out — RedLaser and Keyringapp. Why have a phone or tablet app and card for each store when you can pool them all together into one convenient place. In fact, Keyringapp will also store your library card, gym card and even any gift cards you have. RedLaser just uses shopping loyalty cards, but its main feature is the ability to keep you posted on current coupons and savings for each card. Scroll through and see where the best place to shop will be today or who is running double coupons for even more savings.

Out and about town?

For the app that offers a variety of savings, take a look at Groupon. You can save on travel, local food, services and even find great deals on that online cooking class you always wanted to take. They also have a long list of clearance items at unbelievable prices worth looking at.  If you’re a college student, then you’ll appreciate CampusSpecial. It shows you all the best and cheapest places close to campus, to cure nagging hunger pains or for that much-needed break from dorm food. You may want to add BestParking so when you check out the excellent deals close to home, you’ll know where the prime parking spots are when you arrive.

Shopping shopping and more shopping

While we are on the subject of shopping and savings tips, check out SnipSnap, Retailmenot, ibotta and Receipthog.  Do you love coupons, but don’t want to spend time cutting them out of the daily news? Maybe you’re sitting in the waiting room at your doctor’s office scanning the magazines, and you see an ad you just have to have, but you just don’t feel right ripping out the page. Now you won’t have to; just scan and go with SnipSnap and Retailmenot. If you’re looking to save and make some extra cash by scanning receipts, then Receipthog or ibotta may be just be the app you’re looking for.

Would you like to make traveling more affordable?

If a vacation is on your ‘to do’ list, then take a look at GasBuddyHotelTonight and Kayak to save on travel. Whether you’re traveling back and forth to work or off on a weekend excursion, you’ll want to find the best gas prices. GasBuddy keeps track of your location and shows the cheapest gas closest to your current position. Have you ever missed your flight and need hotel reservations fast? If your answer is yes, then HotelTonight is the app for you. Find the cheapest rates at the last minute with no advance booking – no sleeping on a park bench for you. When you have time to shop in advance, load Kayak on your smartphone. This app helps you find the best prices for flights, hotels and car rentals all in one place.
What’s your favorite way to save on the go? We’d love you hear your comments and experience with the apps we’ve suggested and learn about any super finds and best savings tips you’d like to share. Just leave us a comment and let us know.

Posted in Deals, Tips and Tricks | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Make the Most of National Bike Month

cyclingMay is national bike month, and you know what that means…cool toys for your bike! You heard that right, couch potato season is officially over. Time to shred it like cheese. Trade those bulky layers for cool shorts and tees, get out your bike and cruise down to the bike trail. It doesn’t matter if you’re a roadie, a chaser, a spinner or just looking for an excuse to get outside, there are plenty of top bike apps that can help you make the most of your time.

Getting There- and Back

Before you even lace up your shoes, you should take out your smartphone and download a few apps that will help you map out your course. One of the most popular options for this job is MapMyRide. This application lets you plot your routes or find routes other bikers have used in you area. It’s available on both iPhone and Android for free, but you can also take advantage of a premium option that will give you access to advanced mapping and tools.

Also available on your iPhone and Android devices are free biking apps like Google Maps. Google Maps gives you the opportunity to plot out your trail before you take off and receive turn-by-turn directions.

Getting Started

After a long winter of cruising the couch cushions and enjoying more than your fair share of hot cocoa, (don’t feel bad, we all do it,) your bike might not be in the best shape of its life. Luckily, there’s an app for that. If your bike needs to be serviced, let the Bike Doctor come to your rescue. While it isn’t a free application, it can save you time and money by helping you avoid a bike repair shop. The app gives step-by-step instructions on how to fix any mechanical issue your bike might have.

If you haven’t taken the time yet to purchase the bike of your dreams, SizeMyBike can help. This app is available on Android and iPhone for a price, but can help you choose the right sized road bike or mountain bike for your skill level, height and body type.

Track Your Fitness

There’s nothing like pedaling down a trail, wind in your face and heart pounding. But you don’t enjoy biking simply for the pleasure- at least not completely. It’s also a fantastic way to stay fit. There are a number of top bike apps that can help you track just how fit you really are while you’re on your bike as well.

  • Wahoo Fitness– This app lets you track almost anything, from your heart rate to your speed. It also plays well with others, giving you the opportunity to connect it to your favorite fitness site and link to Bluetooth sensors that monitor your power, speed and pulse.
  • Cyclemeter– When you’re looking for top bike apps, this is one option you can’t miss. It is only available for iPhone users but provides plenty of customizable options you’ll enjoy as you track your fitness. All of the data is saved to your phone and alerts can be set to help you monitor your distance, heart rate and even time.
  • iBiker– Biking apps like iBiker make monitoring your cycling activities simple and easy. While it’s only iOS 8 compatible, it can track your time, speed and heart rate while recording your route at the same time.

Getting the most out of your next bike ride begins with the right biking apps. Make sure your smartphone is compatible to the ones you want to own so you can track and enjoy every trail during national bike month. Is your favorite app not mentioned? Why not leave a comment below and tell us what it is.

Posted in go green, Tech | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Should Your Cloud Be Personal?

Should Your Cloud be Personal Could

Just recently I was going about my business on my MacBook when up pops a notification informing me that my hard disk was almost full. I immediately googled said issue and realized I needed to get my virtual house in order. I got busy deleting unnecessary files and programs but it wasn’t enough. In my case, my music library was bulky and taking up a valuable storage space. I needed a long term storage solution. Solutions such as USB flash drives and external hard drives are helpful for storing important documents and photos but the avid video or music buff will likely run out of room faster than they can keep up with their devices’ storage capacity. Luckily, cloud storage solves these issues without the hassle of taking up physical space. Read on to learn about what kind of cloud storage solution may be right for you.

What’s the Difference Between a Personal and a Public Cloud?

There are a few types of cloud storage options, and currently the most popular is the public cloud. A public cloud service is one like Dropbox, Box and Google Drive. All of these services allow you to store, back up and share your data. Your data is stored on distant servers, right next to other people’s data. Additionally, if you need to store more than the free space allowed for the service you choose, you’ll have to pay monthly or yearly fees just for them to store your stuff.

On the other hand, you could decide to go with a personal cloud storage system. When you compare cloud storage, you’ll notice that when you use a personal cloud storage system, you own and control the entire thing and don’t have to rely on someone else to take care of your valuable data. Instead of leasing cloud storage space, you just store your files on a networked storage device and connect it to the Internet. Then you can access it via apps designed by the maker of the device, or if you’re particularly tech-savvy, can create your own remote access. Of course, there are some other things you should keep in mind.

Storage Capacity and Price

One of the advantages of public cloud storage is that it’s fairly inexpensive. In many cases it’s free if you don’t need a lot of space, though if you do need a decent amount of space, you’ll have to pay a monthly or yearly fee. On the other hand, you only have to pay for personal cloud storage once; there are no recurring charges, so data won’t be compromised if you can’t pony up the cash for those fees.

Security and Privacy

Recent data breaches and controversy over government surveillance are a reminder of the privacy and security risks associated with public cloud storage. If your data is stored outside of the USA, it’s subject to the laws of another country — laws that you may not agree with. With personal cloud storage, you have complete control of your data. In fact, you decide who can access it and who can’t, and you don’t have to worry about your host sharing your most sensitive data.


Your data is susceptible to weather-related problems and abandonment just like regular books, videos and photographs. Even the huge companies aren’t immune to such problems. A few years ago, Amazon’s data center in North Virginia suffered an outage that brought down access to public storage systems, as well as services such as Netflix, Instagram and Pandora. Just last year, a cloud storage company filed for bankruptcy and gave its customers just two weeks to move everything or lose it.

While these incidents are rare, they do happen. However, with personal cloud storage, bad weather in another state won’t stop you accessing your files, and you’ll still be able to get to your data even if the Internet is down or the provider goes belly up. But, the hard drive you use for your personal cloud could fail, so you should still make sure you back up your information regularly.

Regardless of whether you use a public or personal cloud, there are many advantages of cloud storage. I personally decided to go with a personal cloud with 4TB of capacity. That way I could back up my system for a very long time without worrying about running out of space. Plus, I can access my videos and music on the go from my own personal network.

Do you use personal or public cloud storage? If so let us know what you like about it in the comments section below!

Posted in Tech | Tagged , , | 1 Comment