Carbonite, a small but popular online data backup provider, made history of sorts in the storage business on June 25 by becoming the first company to have its service bundled and automatically activated with the sale of a personal computer.
Every Packard Bell computer sold in Europe, beginning in June, will be shipped with Carbonite Online Backup pre-loaded and running, Carbonite President and CEO David Friend told me.
"This is not just a 'craplet' on the desktop that you immediately uninstall," Friend said. "Every new Packard Bell computer comes with four months of free online backup already installed."
Friend believes this is the start of a major trend, and he could be right. Here's why he thinks this is important:
"If your computer hard drive crashes and you lose valuable files, you are three times as likely to switch brands when you buy a new PC," he said.
And rightly so, I might add. In fact, I might never buy that brand again, as many people would.
"This is the first time that a working online backup service has been pre-installed on a name-brand PC. When they build the 'museum of online backup,' this deal will be in it," Friend added.
Looking out three to five years, Friend said, "every PC will probably be shipped with online backup pre-installed and working, just as every PC is shipped with pre-installed anti-virus. This agreement symbolizes the beginning of an industry that ultimately will be as big as the anti-virus industry."