Since the introduction of the iPhone we have gotten used to expecting more functionality from smaller , more portable devices. Today smartphones ship with dual core chips and cameras more powerful than the digital camera I bought a few years ago. However, even with all the advancement in hardware for these devices they remain constrained due to the limitations imposed by size, weight and battery life. But cloud comes to the rescue, because resource intensive tasks can be offloaded to the cloud. As a result, we can continue enjoying mobility without the restrictions that the mobile hardware imposes. A good example is mobile security apps that offload majority of the data analysis to cloud based servers and thus are able to deliver a lightweight endpoint security solution.
But with benefits, cloud also brings some challenges, privacy being one of them. Earlier this year, both Apple and Google were sued over their location tracking services. And more recently a class action lawsuit was filed against HTC and AccuWeather. The AccuWeather app, that cannot be disabled, tracks user location to within a few feet, and then transmits the location information in an unencrypted form to deliver targeted advertising.
Cloud based apps often store at least some of the users data in the cloud and this information could be sold to a 3rd party or made available to government agencies without the users permission or knowledge. Even if privacy concerns are alleviated, data ownership remains a concern. After all, the app provider could go out of business or retain users data even if the user deletes the app. >>Read more