Tariq Krim and a few members of his staff gathered at Numa to present Jolicloud’s 2 Home and Drive. The low-key event called Jolicloud Ecosystem Party saw circa 100 people attend, and was structured around 3 moments: Tariq Krim’s intro speech, François Beaufort Chromium Evangelist presenting APIs, and 4 selected french startups that will soon be present on Drive.
Netvibes and Jolicloud founder, Krim’s speech was all about Jolicloud’s story and brand DNA. As the second one comes somewhat as a heritage of the first, Krim talked about the web as the last space of freedom, his concern to make the cloud more accessible to everyone, or the boom of mobile use which makes place for larger web creativity. A sense of “back to the roots” – as Netvibes was already called, back in 2005, “dashboard everything” – Jolicloud’s goal being to aggregate and unify people’s use of the cloud into one place.
5 years, several pivots and 1.3 million users-worldwide later, Jolicloud launches Jolicloud 2 which “lives entirely on the browser”. With Home and Drive being it’s main products Jolicloud revamps itself proposing content services and storage space. One can for instance connect Dropbox, Google Drive, Soundcloud or Evernote and have it all in one place. Any type of files are supported: MP3, PDF, epub, video, Jolicloud 2 has everything taken care of for you. One can share or edit files in one click, it’s no wonder Jolicloud reinvents itself as “a place to call home”.
What Krim and his team learned from the several pivots these past years, is that they can’t beat Chrome which has a dominant position: 1 billion users worldwide and a lightweight OS. The smart move was to integrate with it, and take advantage of all the other features Chrome has to offer: offline mode or Chrome APIs, just to mention those. Beaufort’s intervention was, in this respect, ment to demo some of Chrome’s powerful features, and also showcase Jolicloud’s technical API empowerment. Beaufort talked about Sphero, the robotic ball Obama played with, controlled with Android-iOS app, but also on bluetooth via a Chrome app. He also mentioned socket API in Chrome which can be used to control a Parrot Drone, or media Galleries API used to install Picassa for instance.
The metamorphosis of Jolicloud also occurs through an anchor to the french startup ecosystem, and Krim invited 4 (very) promising startups to present their products. Jolicloud can thus maintain a leading positioning in the ecosystem (which Netvibes had and lost) and also benefit from the traction and credit new startups bring to the table. The startups invited were:
All of them will soon be available on Jolicloud.
Jolicloud is intuitive, simple to use. I honestly think I will continue using it, at least for a while. It is nice to have a “unified browser”, all your online life in one place, and get more free storage space. What is not so much appealing to me is the layout of a Feedly into the platform: you don’t have a neat list of articles, you have a wall of pictures you can click on. This makes my browsing through the articles harder, and ultimately utterly annoying. Same with Facebook: my timeline doesn’t look like my timeline any more and I don’t like that.
On the whole, Jolicloud is a quality personal-cloud, browser-based product I would certainly recommend.