TL; DR: ASUSTOR, founded in 2011 with the help of ASUSTek Computer Inc., provides network-attached storage (NAS) and video surveillance solutions, plus related firmware and applications. The company’s innovative storage servers were designed to be user-friendly, regardless of skill level, meeting evolving consumer demands. With continuous development in the gaming market and beyond, ASUSTOR is devoted to becoming a global leader in digital storage.
Google is known for killing off its apps, services, and hardware innovations swiftly and without warning. The practice is so common, in fact, that there are entire websites dedicated to documenting the ghosts of Google’s past.
But the tech giant’s most recent move — ending free unlimited storage for Google Photos — is poised to be a real heartbreaker.
As of June 1, 2021, all photos uploaded will count against the free data limit of 15GB.
Google Photos has upwards of 1 billion users. Many of them are now left scrambling after relying on the service as a primary or backup storage option over the years. Fortunately, alternatives exist for those who don’t want to pay for a storage subscription through Google.
Users can find one option in Network-Attached Storage (NAS), a dedicated file server accessible through the network. While many NAS devices are priced prohibitively for home users, ASUSTOR designed its network storage solutions to be accessible in terms of both price point and ease of use.
“A lot of Google users are in a panic trying to find a solution for photo storage,” said Anton Lin, Sales and Marketing Specialist at ASUSTOR America, Inc. “External hard drive enclosures may not offer enough protection for critical data or visibility for data sharing. Our innovative NAS is user-friendly and available at an entry-level price for high-end equipment.”
The company offers several products designed to meet the demands of home users, power users, and SMBs in the network storage and video surveillance spaces. Ultimately, ASUSTOR’s goal is to provide an unparalleled user experience and one of the most comprehensive menus of network storage solutions on the market.
Established in 2011 via Investments from ASUS
ASUSTOR — named for a mashup of ASUS and storage — was formed a decade ago via an investment from the popular hardware company ASUSTeK Computer Inc.
“I joined ASUSTOR in 2017, but the company was established in 2011 with headquarters in Taipei, the capital of Taiwan,” Anton said. “We saw an opportunity to offer improved products in the data storage area — specifically in NAS — and we got funding from the ASUS Group to achieve that goal.”
By 2012, ASUSTOR announced its industry-first app-based NAS storage server during COMPUTEX Taipei, an annual computer expo. The company introduced NAS along with its dedicated operating system, ASUSTOR Data Master (ADM).
Later that year, ASUSTOR became the first digital surveillance solution to support local HDMI playback with four free camera channel licenses. The company has reached many milestones ever since, including the release of ADM 3.2 and the ASUSTOR EZ-Connect Portal in 2018. The portal makes it easier than ever for users to connect to and open a personal NAS interface.
“In the past, you would need at least some basic networking knowledge to work with a NAS, but we try to make things simple,” Anton said. “You can just go to our website, put in your Cloud ID and password, and easily access your NAS at home.”
Over the years, ASUSTOR has also received multiple awards. Recent accolades include the 2019 Tech Trend Gold Award for the Nimbustor 4 from Techbang, a Taiwan-based media channel, and listings among PCMag’s 2020 compilation of top NAS devices. In December 2020, ASUSTOR announced that the Lockerstor2 received an Editors’ Choice award from PCMag.
Innovative Storage and Surveillance to Meet Changing Demands
Anton told us that business is up as the global pandemic has accelerated digital transformation and, consequently, technical adoption worldwide via remote operations and workforces.
“The pandemic and resulting lockdown have been rough for everyone, but the IT industry is unexpectedly booming,” Anton said. “Our parent company, for example, is seeing an increase in their overall sales because everybody needs to work from home — both children and adults — so people are more reliant on networking and data storage solutions.”
ASUSTOR’s full range of NAS devices is efficient and cost-effective, with ample storage potential and comprehensive security protection.
ASUSTOR’s EZ Sync feature makes synchronizing important files between a NAS and PC at home or work a breeze. In addition, the DataSync can be used to back up files and photos to public cloud services, including Dropbox, Google Drive, and OneDrive.
The company is also committed to ensuring data protection via multi-level security designed to prevent data loss, damage, and theft. All ASUSTOR NAS devices provide military-grade AES 256-bit encryption, and a Snapshot creates historical backups that can be used to restore data if needed.
A Focus on User Friendliness Regardless of Skill Level
ASUSTOR provides a wide variety of two-bay and four-bay NAS storage servers, but customers don’t have to worry about choosing the wrong product.
The company’s NAS Selector makes finding a suitable solution painless. The tool offers recommendations and comparisons for NAS products based on requirements such as storage space, functionality, hardware specifications, and use case (home, office, SMB, or enterprise). After ordering, the configuration process is also designed to be headache-free via an intuitive user interface — because not everybody knows how to manage a NAS device from a Linux installation via a command line.
“We make it user-friendly because a lot of people are turned off from using NAS products due to lack of education,” Anton said. “A lot of people will buy the NAS, plug it into the USB drive like an external hard drive, get frustrated, and return it. That’s why we’ve focused on making our user interface tablet-like. It’s easier to use than the Amazon Echo speaker.”
Anton told us users can simply plug the NAS into a router, download an app, and manage the entire configuration from a smartphone.
ASUSTOR also makes its products more affordable than most.
“In the past, if you wanted a 10GB network bandwidth, you would have to spend $5,000 to $10,000 for a NAS,” Anton said. “But we bring it down to a couple hundred for a two- to four-bay device for the home user. They can use the normal RJ45, and then maybe buy a 10GB router — there are a lot of manufacturers making the 10GB routers to establish 10GB network bandwidth at home.”
ASUSTOR’s pricing structure is also reasonable compared with the current competition. “Even when our competitors run Black Friday deals, those prices match our normal day-to-day MSRP,” Anton said.
Continuous Development, Particularly in the Gaming Market
ASUSTOR expects continued growth in 2021 as many make the move to 2.5/5G Ethernet. The company’s high-performance Lockerstor NAS storage servers are now equipped with an Intel CPU, dual 2.5-Gigabit Ethernet, and dual M.2 SSD slots.
On the software side, Anton said content creators are looking for places to store large files, including video files created using action cameras and 360-degree VR cameras attached to drones.
“A lot of customers are using our NAS devices to store videos from the Insta360,” he said. “We have a new feature for our photo browser that allows users to transcode panoramic photos.”
ASUSTOR is also focusing on the gaming industry with data storage solutions that expand storage for a PC. Because cloud platforms like YouTube and Twitch are not always reliable for long-term content storage, gamers can use ASUSTOR’s Takeasy app to download videos for archival purposes.
“We have very successfully broken into the gaming market due to demand for data storage solutions other than external exclosures, and we expect continued growth in 2021,” Anton said.