Syncplicity came within touching distance of an award in this Labs, thanks to a combination of superb usability, good value for money and a decent set of features. Unlike its close rival, SugarSync, it offers a free 2GB service, although this will only synchronise two PCs.
Syncplicity lives up to its name in terms of ease of use. The client suggests common folders to sync on installation, but also makes it easy to create your own, and selecting which folders and subfolders to include is as easy as ticking a checkbox. Create a new folder, and other machines will be invited to join as they connect. Once set up, you can check the status of files and folders at a glance.
The service offers a strong feature set, falling behind SugarSync when it comes to cross-platform support and media streaming, but making up for that with its more detailed status reports, manual controls and clever integration of standard, web-based applications. Right-click on a synchronised file and you can view or edit it using Zoho, Scribd iPaper or Picnik, and it also works with Google Docs to synchronise locally stored and edited documents with their Google equivalents.
File and folder sharing is also well implemented. Syncplicity users get an invitation to join your new folder on their desktop, and you can easily set read and write permissions. Unfortunately, there are fewer features in the Flash-based, browser client, and while it’s easy to upload and download files to the service this way, it isn’t particularly fast.
Syncplicity is a speedy, reliable online service, and at $50 (£35) per year for 50GB of storage, it offers good value for money. It’s an excellent alternative to SugarSync.
|Software subcategory||Online backup|
Operating system support
|Operating system Windows Vista supported?||yes|
|Operating system Windows XP supported?||yes|