Modern storage dilemma: The hard drive or the cloud?
For years, the size of a computer's hard drive was often one of its biggest selling points. As desktop and laptop computers became ubiquitous tools for work, web browsing, gaming and other tasks, users naturally needed more space.
Now, with the rise of cloud computing, a computer's hard drive is less of a concern. Users don't have to worry about uploading their entire, uncompressed collection of home movies, because the cloud offers an infinite amount of storage space for which the user just pays as he or she goes.
However, there are still some kinks in the cloud that may dissuade computer users. Security is often cited as an inhibitor of the cloud, because users may be uncomfortable storing their files and documents on a third-party server. Additionally, the cloud requires internet connectivity. If a user cannot access the web, he or she may be unable to access important files.
Computing trends do seem to be shifting more toward the cloud, as tablets and computers with minimal onboard hard drive space are introduced. However, the best approach is perhaps a combination of the two. Users can utilize cloud-based "digital lockers" to store less crucial data, such as music and photographs, while a physical hard drive can be used for more important files.