On July 13, 2005, I wrote a blog entry discussing total cost of ownership, and contemplated why a photographer should use PhotoShelter when they could “get a 1TB hard drive for $1000” to back-up their images. At that time, 1TB of storage cost $4800/year on PhotoShelter.
I made the case in 2005 that the reason you should pay (significantly) more was that you were getting geographically redundant RAID, plus a feature set that was built for professional photographers. Having files online not only makes sense from a back-up strategy, but from a workflow strategy as well. We can’t reiterate this enough. We felt then, as we do now, that online storage will be the norm, not the exception for file storage. But I think we intuitively knew that the price had to be price competitive with desktop solutions to be considered seriously.
The pricing is now competitive.
Today, we announced an add-on storage option for our subscribers with a Pro or Standard account. These users can get 1TB of additional storage for $1000/year, or 500GB for $600/year. A desktop solution with 1TB of usable space currently runs about $1300 at a minimum.
And if you did buy a drive, you still couldn’t:
- Easily access its contents remotely
- Assemble online galleries
- Use collaboration tools like our lightbox
- Integrate it into your website
- Price and license online
We all use multiple computers. We all travel to various destinations. All our clients need images at the most inopportune times. We’ve all suffered hard drive crashes. Having your images online has so many advantages, we shouldn’t even need to argue the point anymore.
Still think it doesn’t make sense? Tell me why.