Pogoplug Goes Software Only (and 200 Technologizer Readers Get the Premium Version for Free)

By  |  Wednesday, June 22, 2011 at 11:08 am

Pogoplug is a clever $99 gizmo that lets you plug USB hard drives into your home network, so you can access their contents–photos, music, movies, and more–across the Internet. As anyone who’s used it knows, much of the cleverness lies in the nicely-done Web-based interface (and mobile apps) you use to connect to the drives and get at the stuff on them. And today, Pogoplug is releasing a software-only version for Windows and Macs that lets you experience that cleverness without investing in the gizmo.

Pogoplug’s software-based version works just like the hardware device, except the drive it’s putting on the Web is the one inside the Windows PC or Mac the software is running on. Once you installed the application on a computer and let it index your files, they’re available to you from any Web browser and from PogoPlug’s iPhone/iPad and Android apps.

The Pogoplug service and mobile apps aggregates all your content across all your Pogoplug-enabled drives; as you listen to music, watch videos, and peruse photos, you don’t need to figure out where you stored them. They’re all there, organized into albums (for music) and timeline views (for videos and photos). You can also share individual items with other people using e-mail or (in the browser-based interface) Facebook.

Unlike SugarSync, Google Music Beta, Microsoft’s SkyDrive, Apple’s upcoming iCloud, and umpteen other services, using Pogoplug doesn’t involve transferring your files into a great hard drive in the sky–it stays put wherever it is, and is only accessible when it’s on a disk that’s connected to the Internet. That means that the software version is most useful if you’ve got one or more computers which you tend to leave on most or all of the time. But it also means that there are no ongoing fees, and that it’s as easy to put a terabyte of media online as it is to share a gigabyte or two.

Pogoplug’s new software is available in two versions: a freebie edition that lets you stream photos anywhere and music within your home network, and a $29 Premium version that adds music streaming outside the local network and video streaming everywhere. (That’s $29 per Pogoplug account, not per computer, and it’s a one-time fee.)

The Pogoplug folks were nice enough to provide us a special link which will let 200 Technologizer readers get the $29 version for free. If you check it out, let us know what you think.




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7 Comments For This Post

  1. Manik Says:

    That's great but the Special Link Page is not opening right now.

  2. @antnyc Says:

    You should be able to use the link now, but the offer is dead. You can still get $10 off the sub though.

  3. Manik Says:

    working now 🙂 and applied

  4. Paul Says:

    Wow, thank you. Just got the code, can not wait to get everything setup and start testing.

  5. dholyer Says:

    Nice feature, but what about privacy matters? I have over 10T sitting on my other PC that is not connected to the Net or Web. Just to keep it protected from others eyes, like the RIAA. And my banking or financing data may be on a pad or PC but will never be connected to the Net. If I can break into others data, why would I trust anyone else from not doing it to me. And I'm only Mr. Average, Mr Genius would have no problem getting my secrets.

  6. @heulenwolf Says:

    Cool, thanks for passing on the offer. I've got it running. Some notes:
    1) Its not made for Windows Home Server. They didn't say it was, so this isn't a knock on them, but it would be nice. Its the only system I leave on all day at home meeting their OS requirements. If their software could run as a service and enable remote access to UNC paths instead of just local drive letters, it would work great on WHS. All that being said, their remote interface is FAR better than that built into WHS which is part of why I'm trying it.
    2) The my.pogoplug.com site initially logs you in via https but then switches back to unencrypted http when you're actually viewing your files. This seems like a huge security hole to me given in light of Firesheep and the common hacks of the http interface it points out when connected via open WiFi or other untrusted networks (e.g. hotels) where travelers often connect.
    3) I tried playing back a video stored on my home server and it is very choppy through the web interface regardless of where I view it from.
    4) The android app is pretty good though it needs refinement. One oddity is that I could start playing back a song then navigate to other parts of the app with the song continuing to play in the background. There was no clear way to get back to the player controls to stop playing the song. I had to exit the app to get it to stop. Another oddity is that the app does not rotate into widescreen layout on my Droid.
    5) As a consumer, I love that their charge for their devices and this software is one-time. I don't see how they can stay in business without recurring fees, though. I know this isn't a cloud storage service, with ridiculous storage server farm costs. The data are actually stored on my home server, but they must stream through pogoplug's servers when accessed remotely. They seem to be rapidly iterating their software and there are certainly recurring bandwidth costs. That all costs recurring money. Is their plan to grow infinitely such that new customers pay for the costs of serving existing customers or will their service degrade over time?

  7. @heulenwolf Says:

    A add-on to my prior note #2: You can force https-only connections in the web interface by going to Settings -> Security Settings -> Checking "Use full security sessions." I still think it should be the default to protect customers but at least it is an option.