Adobe recently launched a new beta application called Share that allows you to upload and share files. You can share file to a rostered list, the URL to the file, or embed the file on your web page (as I have done below). Adobe also has a Share API that uses simple REST-based protocol for developers to build their own applications or mashups with using Share. I wasn’t clear from the documentation how the commercial pricing will work or if building an application for others to manage or share their files will count against your account or bandwidth. In fact, I am not sure what the pricing schema is for Share.
Another puzzling thought is why did Adobe develop share to begin with? You have a lot of existing vendors in the storage service provider arena already, in fact, you have many that use Adobe’s existing software to develop tools around storage and sharing. So it is strange that a software company decided to compete with companies that already use its software to provide the same service (Bluestring by AOL is one example). Does this mean that Adobe intends to become an online service for storage, document editing (Buzzword) and media editing (Remix and Photoshop Express)?
I mean, its cool that the applications Adobe builds use their own software (Flex, Flash, etc.), but when they start competing with other companies using also using Adobe software to provide similar services (aka, the bread and butter of those organizations), then I am wondering what will be the outcome? Is Adobe to become a huge conglomerate that not only provides services and software, but competes with its own food source for resources? What’s next, Adobe phones? Of course I am joking. I love Adobe and I love their products. I guess as Flex developer, I’m just comfortable with Adobe providng me with the tools to create applications and not competing with the tools I create. I could totally be misreading this move by Adobe, which is most likely the case (I say this so that a big black panel van with tinted windows doen’t pull up beside me one day and take me away).
Well, time will tell for sure. The storage business is extremely expensive (bandwidth, banks of servers) and there are a lot of established companies already out there with storage and sharing services that offer more space and possibly a lower cost (Xdrive, Box, Mozy, Bluestring, Amazon S3) with sharing capabilities and API’s. For now, the Share API looks to be a simple to use and easy service providing minimal sharing capabilities and less complexity than some other API’s.