If you use an external hard drive (external hdd), the Lima Ultra (the second iteration of the Lima) wants to convert it to your own personal cloud storage with its new device.
The value proposition seems almost counter-intuitive to the predominant mindset. Why bother with a physical cloud storage when decluttering and on-the-go access are the very bases of established services such as iCloud, GoogleDrive, Dropbox and their ilk?
You would think that angle is pretty well covered but Lima is exploiting that niche.
How The Personal Cloud Storage Device Works
So, the Ultra is actually a pretty small device and the kit when unboxed, contains the device, ethernet and power cables as well as a user guide. To the credit of its designers, this device is very easy to install and use.
The device acts as a connector between your router and your external HDD. How cool is that? The set up is a breeze and installation takes a few deep breaths. Actually, the manufacturer says it takes ten minutes but users have recorded less time.
Setting up your External HDD with Lima Ultra
Physical connection simply requires plugging the ethernet cable to the device then connecting the device to your external HDD via USB cable. The steps in a nutshell are as follows:
- Download the installation application from the Lima website and install
- Create an account on the website by following the simple prompts
- Ensure the physical connection as earlier described is in place as the software will immediately try to detect the device
- Once the device is detected, the software will automatically commence its setup and updating process. This process typically results in erasure of any data on the hard drive. So, you may need to backup any important data.
- Once you give the go-ahead to complete installation, it then configures your hard drive and gives you the option to connect your PC and mobile device. Note that connecting your smartphone will require entering your phone number.
- After completing these stages, you will notice that Lima appears on your PC or mobile device as a mounted stick and you can see the various folders; pictures, videos and music.
How Is The Ultra Different?
Okay, so you’re wowed by this device but you have just got to ask these two questions before parting with $129 for it:
- Why don’t I just plug my external HDD to my laptop (as I have been doing anyway?)
- Can I access my hard drive ANYWHERE without taking it with me?
Good questions. Let’s tackle them.
First, connecting your hard drive to your PC can be very restrictive; you have to ensure it is plugged in and carried carefully so it doesn’t fall and get damaged. The Ultra cuts out all these hassles and ensures that you can access your files from multiple devices, even your smartphone once you are within WiFi range.
Secondly, yes you can access your hard drive as long as it is connected to a WiFi and your device is also connected wherever you are. So, it is your personal cloud storage and can go everywhere with you without the necessity of physical proximity.
What’s In It For Me Then?
LimaUltra offers incredible benefits and these are just a few of them
- Privacy: All cloud service providers tout privacy as a benefit but it is difficult to forget the iCloud photo hack that took place in 2014. So, instead of having to place sensitive files in the hands of cloud services, Lima offers users the opportunity to secure privacy by having their own personal cloud storage service.
- Cost: Over time, accrued costs from purchasing extra storage space on regular cloud services are in access of Lima’s offering. Doubt it? Let’s do a little analysis; Google Drive gives 15Gb of free storage and once you use it up (very easy to accomplish if you are a heavy hitter), you have to shell out $20 for an additional 100Gb, renewable annually. If you use that up too, it’ll cost you a further $100 for 1 Terrabyte, again, renewable annually. So, you would have spent a minimum of $100 within a year on storage subscription services if your needs are as much as 1 Terabyte. In two years, that would be at least $200. However, the combined once-off cost of a 1 Terabyte hard drive and the Ultra would be $$180.
- Speed: Using a cloud storage service limits your access speed to ISP connection speeds and sometimes, location. However, access to the device is based on the WiFi router speed which could be as high as 125Gigabit. Note though, that enjoying such high speeds happens when you are using the same WiFi network as the Lima Ultra. If you are on a different network, your speed is dependent on the WiFi to which you are connected.
So, if you are a developer, movie aficionado, content creator or a purveyor of digital materials, the Lima Ultra may just well-suited for your storage needs. Its 1.5GHz processor, Gigabit Ethernet port and compatibility with main OS ecosystem including Mac, Windows, Linux and iOS certainly make it ideal for freelancers. You can save on your storage costs by investing in this small yet powerful device.