Cubbit Aims to Crowdsource the Cloud for Improved Privacy (Crowdfunding)

Storing data in the cloud is convenient since you have access it from anywhere with an Internet connection, but there are privacy concerns, and you may have to pay a monthly fee if you exceed you storage limit. Cubbit aims to reinvent the cloud by not  storing files in corporate datacenters, but instead relying on a swarm of “Cubbit Cells” to deliver fully private and reliable cloud storage without monthly. You’d just need to pay for the boxes and potentially extra local storage, and then it’s basically free to use afterwards.

Cubbit Cell

Cubbit Cell hardware specifications:

  • Processor – Dual core Arm Cortex-A53 processor @ up to 1.2 GHz (possibly Marvell Armada 3700)
  • System Memory – 1GB DDR4
  • Storage – Built-in SATA drive
  • Networking – 1x Gigabit Ethernet port
  • USB – 1x USB 3.0 port
  • Power Supply – 12V
  • Dimensions – 160 x 142 x 56mm

The hardware looks like a basic NAS with a single drive, but what makes Cubbit special is that your file are securely accessible from anywhere. Files are first encrypted with AES-256, then divided into 24 chunks and processed into 36 redundancy shards, before being distributed to the network. You’ll need to access any of 24 shards to retrieve you file, that means that even if somebody turns off his Cubbit Cell or loses internet connectivity for a while, you’d still be able to access your files. In theory, if 9 of the Cubbits Cells where one of your files happens to be stored go down, you would not be able to access that file anymore. To work around the issue, the company implemented “AI monitors” that check the uptime status of each cell, and starts a recovery procedure when the number of shards goes below 30.

Cubbit Home DashboardEach Cubbit Cell will come with 512GB or 1GB of cloud storage, and you can expend it up to 4GB cloud storage with each additional 2GB of physical storage bringing you 1GB of cloud storage. Up to 4 accounts can be created per Cubbit Cell, and you can access your files from computers or mobile devices like traditional cloud storage services.

Some of the benefits of the solution is that nobody can access your files, even Cubbit team, since it’s encrypted and distributed over the network, it’s supposed to be fast since data is distributed over several cells, it’s free to use apart from the initial hardware and optional storage cost, and it provides some neat features like “instant upload”, which allows you to quickly load the file locally to your Cell, so you can go out with your laptop while the file is being uploaded to the cloud while you are away.

Cubbit launched on Kickstarter last month, and with four days to go they are well passed their 50,000 Euros funding target with over 260,000 Euros raised from close to 1,200 backers. Rewards start at 239 Euros for a Cubbit Cell 512GB, and 299 Euros for the 1TB model. Shipping adds 19 Euros for single Cubbit Cell rewards, and a bit more for bundles. Backers can expect their rewards to be shipped in August 2019 if everything goes according to plans.

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