Canonical admits failure -- shuttering Ubuntu One cloud services

The cloud business is all the rage nowadays. There are so many companies offering similar services, that it can be hard to choose one. It can also be hard to break into the crowded landscape when big boys such as Microsoft and Google are representing.

So, when Canonical launched Ubuntu One, I was dubious. After all, a small company competing in cloud storage and music sales would be facing an uphill battle. Also, I am sorry to be blunt, but naming a cloud service after an operating system is just plain idiotic. It confuses consumers to think it only works on that operating system. Not to mention, Linux users are very competitive -- Fedora or Arch users would never use anything branded "Ubuntu". And so, today, Canonical announces that it is shuttering its cloud services. Will you shed a tear?

"Today we are announcing plans to shut down the Ubuntu One file services. This is a tough decision, particularly when our users rely so heavily on the functionality that Ubuntu One provides. However, like any company, we want to focus our efforts on our most important strategic initiatives and ensure we are not spread too thin", says Jane Silber, Canonical CEO.

Silber further explains, "as of today, it will no longer be possible to purchase storage or music from the Ubuntu One store. The Ubuntu One file services will not be included in the upcoming Ubuntu 14.04 LTS release, and the Ubuntu One apps in older versions of Ubuntu and in the Ubuntu, Google, and Apple stores will be updated appropriately. The current services will be unavailable from 1 June 2014; user content will remain available for download until 31 July, at which time it will be deleted".

I know a few people that are heavy Ubuntu One users who will be saddened by this. Having to download all of their files locally and then upload to a new service will be quite the pain in the buttocks. This is one of the major downsides to the cloud -- you are at the company's mercy. Luckily, the data will not be deleted until July, so that will give users a reasonable amount of time to transition.

Quite frankly though, this is a business that Canonical never should have entered. It makes a great product in the Ubuntu operating system and shuttering this service is an unnecessary blemish on an otherwise respectable brand. With that said, I respect Canonical for admitting failure and moving on; something other companies have trouble doing.

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