Is Cloud Storage Over-the-Top Too Expensive?

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2011-07-18 Print this article Print

Is cloud storage, which appears to be a bargain off the top, overly expensive when compared to buying your own drive and keeping everything on your desk? It certainly looks that way.

For example, you can now buy portable disk drives holding 2TB of storage (2,000GB!) for under $100 -- in fact, there are some that can cost as low as $75. Craziness, but that's the market right now.

On the other hand,'s S3 service charges 12.5 cents per-GB/month for its cloud storage. Using that figure, a customer who wants to store 2TB in the cloud for three years would pay about $4,500, or $2.19 per gigabyte.

For a consumer or VSB (very small business), that might be inordinately expensive. For an enterprise, however, that is a huge bargain, when compared to the cost of maintaining servers, arrays, switches, et cetera in a data center.

Of course, there are many pros and cons to each type of storage. We don't need to list them here.

In any case, one of my colleagues, Frank J. Ohlhorst, decided to take a close look at the math involved with the economies of scale, and he came up with a noteworthy article on it.

You can check out Frank's perspective here at eWEEK's Smarter Technology section.

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