Who are you, and what have you done with David Friend?

Normally I agree with David Friend of Carbonite, cofounder of my favorite of those $5/month online backup services with very few features and capabilities to meet its price. There’s a growing need for services like that – but not in the Business market.

His recent press release, however, doesn’t sound like him, unless he’s become desperate, bitter and poorly informed all of sudden. I hope not. I’d rather believe an intern at his PR firm came up with this unfortunate bit of tripe and put “David said” after made up quotes based on bad research. He’s much smarter than this, or he used to be.

‘Cause here’s why.

The release claims that in the coming wave of consolidation which many analysts predict will happen in 2008, “pricing will be the key differentiator for those who survive.”

Friend, please! Pricing may be ONE of the differentiators, but it will be far from the KEY differentiator – and established companies like the ones you called “antiquated” – Arsenal, EVault, Connected, and LiveVault, are not going to be forced to “cash in their chips” because of competition from the likes of Carbonite.

Carbonite cannot compete on features and power with services like LiveVault, Asigra, and my own RBackup. Attempting to discount us as being “legacy services” that can’t make it against cheaper systems like Carbonite is just simply laughable. Further, claiming that Carbonite has access to some kind of advanced technology not available to us, and that we’re inadequate because of our backwardness is ridiculous and transparent.

David, your recent press release compares apples to oranges, misleading readers. You compare Carbonite, a simple desktop backup system for personal use, with more capable, pedigreed, enterprise-class server backup systems so far beyond Carbonite it’s just silly. Nobody in his right mind will ever replace LiveVault with Carbonite, at any price.

If you need enterprise-class service, with server backup functionality, you will use RBackup or LiveVault or Asigra, or any number of other services, and you will pay the price for the increased functionality. If all you need is to back up (very slowly) a few pre-selected files from your laptop, and you’re on a limited budget, you might pick Carbonite.

Finally, your claim of Carbonite being “one of the largest of the remaining independent companies in the space” is a little misleading, too. There are hundreds of us – some bigger than you, with better software and more time in the market. It sounds like you’re bitter because you haven’t been aquired like the other companies you mentioned.

In closing, just after re-reading David’s release, I am wondering what its point is. The best I can figure, Dave wants us to believe that Carbonite, and its $5/month price point is going to kick all our asses, and he’s a little bitter about having been overlooked so far in the few consolidation deals that have made the news.

David, I’d fire your PR agency if this release was their idea.

About The Author

Steve Roberts / http://remote-backup.com

Steve Roberts is VP of Engineering at Remote Backup Systems (http://remote-backup.com), developers of the RBackup Online Backup software platform, providing software powering more than 9,500 Service Providers in 65 countries since 1987.