What Is Amazon Zocalo?

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The newly launched Amazon Zocalo is a new secure cloud storage service. Currently available in limited preview, and primarily geared towards large enterprises, the world’s largest e-commerce company’s latest offering offers a host of sharing and collaboration features, with powerful feedback control and file encryption capabilities. It’s fully managed, and can be easily enabled for all the employees of an organization. Users can upload and comment on files, securely share them with others for feedback, specify fine-grained access rights for the files, and a lot more. The documents stored on Zocalo can be readily edited, and any changes that a user makes to the document are instantly synced to the current version. To top it all off, Amazon Zocalo can be accessed from virtually any device out there, with native sync applications for iOS, Android, Kindle Fire, Windows and OSX. Sounds like something that could serve your organization’s collaboration needs? Let’s find out more.

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So What Exactly Is Amazon Zocalo?

In the simplest of words, Amazon Zocalo could be termed as a secure enterprise grade cloud storage service largely focused towards large organizations. However, that definition misses out on a lot of features that it comes packed with. Amazon Zocalo is fully managed (which simply means that there are no complicated setups required to deploy it on an organizational level), and easily scalable. Users can upload files of any type, and specify finely tuned sharing and access rights for them. The files can be easily edited in the cloud, and any changes made to them (either by a single user or by multiple users working collaboratively) are instantly synced. There’s also versioning control so the users can always retrieve an earlier version of the file, if need be. All Microsoft Office files, PDFs, images, web pages, and text files can be directly previewed and commented upon.

Apart from that, there are a ton of security features for secure collaboration of files. The owner of the file can specify sharing, feedback, and access rights for individual files. Both files and folders can be shared. Obviously, sharing permissions can be revoked as well. All of the transmission and reception of data is done over SSL encrypted connections, and files are stored on Amazon’s own AWS based cloud storage infrastructure.

Here’s a list of some other important features of Amazon Zocalo:

  • Fully managed and easily scalable. All of the users, and their access rights can be managed by the administrator via a centralized AWS management console.
  • Upload files of virtually any type, with previewing (and to an extent, editing) support for most common files types such as Microsoft Office documents, PDFs, images etc. A single file up to 5 GB in size can be uploaded.
  • Share individual files or entire folders, and specify access rights (e.g. who can view the file, who can download it) for them. Revoke the permissions for your files any time you want.
  • Request feedback on the shared files and set a deadline for it. Track status of your feedback requests.
  • Files can be shared with extra-organizational users as well.
  • Specify storage limits for each user, and prevent sharing of files outside of the organizational Zocalo network.
  • Truly cross platform, with native sync/access applications for Windows, OSX, iOS, Android and Kindle Fire.

Currently in limited preview, Amazon Zocalo offers a free 30 day trial with 200 GB of storage per user, for a maximum of 50 users. If you’re an existing AWS (Amazon Web Services) user, you can sign up for the limited preview trial here.

Conclusion

Amazon Zocalo is an incredible secure cloud storage service. It offers a ton of features to its target audience, i.e. big enterprises. Although this market is already dominated by the likes of Dropbox, Box, OneDrive and Google Drive, Zocalo is proof that Amazon wants a share or two of this lucrative sector as well. Zocalo is full of features, and pricing is competitive. The fact that it’s backed by Amazon’s excellent and robust AWS infrastructure (which already powers some of the best enterprise grade cloud storage and collaboration services out there), makes it even better. However, how much impact Zocalo manages to make in the end, is something only time will tell, once it’s let out in the wild.

What do you think about Amazon Zocalo? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.

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