French startups are taking a more privacy centric approach file sharing

They want to let users and enterprises remain in control of their data

Lima's upcoming device for file sharing between all kinds of devices.

Lima's upcoming device for file sharing between all kinds of devices.

French startups such as Lima, Pydio and Infinit are taking a more privacy-centric approach to file sharing with offerings for consumers as well as organizations.

The growing popularity of online storage and file sharing services such as Dropbox puts the technology on a collision course with CIOs, who want to remain in control of enterprise data, and raises increasing privacy concerns after revelations about U.S. government snooping on such services.

Lima, Pydio and Infinit -- which are all taking part in the Web Summit conference in Dublin -- see this as an opportunity to offer products that address these concerns and offer better performance.

Pydio offers an open source platform for file sharing and synchronization that's hosted in a company's own datacenter.

"The idea is to take back control of the data," said founder Charles Du Jeu.

One of the benefits of the platform is that it's storage agnostic, letting companies take advantage of their existing storage system as well as servers to help keep the costs down. Pydio's platform can also be connected to Active Directory and LDAP directories for user authentication.

Users can still access and share their files via native mobile apps or using desktop synchronization. Next month Pydio is planning to release a big update that will improve the Web access user interface and add more features for sharing files, according to Du Jeu.

The enterprise version of Pydio's platform costs about €800 (US$1,000) per year for 100 users, according to the company's website.

Another company, Infinit, has taken a different approach to file sharing by basing its free application on peer-to-peer technology in order to improve speeds.

"We are between five and 30 times faster than cloud-based solutions, and there is no limitation on the file sizes," said Baptiste Fradin, co-founder and chief operating officer at Infinit.

The transfers are especially fast when a file is transferred between users on the same local network. A 2GB file can be transferred between two users in the same Wi-Fi network in about 10 minutes. The more bandwidth users have, the faster the transfers will be.

Privacy is improved because there are no central servers and the files are encrypted end to end.

On Mac OS, users just have to drag the file or folder they want to share to the Infinit icon on the menu bar and the pick the recipients from images or a menu that drops down. The company also offers a Windows client, although that's still in beta.

These days, mobile apps have become a must, and Infinit will have its own early next year, it announced on Tuesday at Web Summit. For now, the company is targeting in creative sectors that handle large files, according to Fradin. After being available for about three months it has about 50,000 active users.

However, it isn't just professional users that want control of their storage and file sharing, according to Lima, which is developing a product for home use. It's attached to a broadband connection and a USB storage device.

"The product makes sure that whatever computer, tablet or smartphone you use, you always get access to the same files. We are trying to end the problem of not knowing where your files are," said Séverin Marcombes, CEO at Lima.

A change on one device is directly echoed on all others. Having the device at home improves performance, and lets the user retain control of their data, according to Marcombes.

The product will start shipping next spring and can now be pre-ordered on Lima's website for $110 including shipping.

Send news tips and comments to mikael_ricknas@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Internet-based applications and servicesWEBSUMMITInfinitPydioLimainternet

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Mikael Ricknäs

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?