NAS Hard Drive for Personal Cloud?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by jmine83, Nov 24, 2012.

  1. jmine83 macrumors member

    Jul 9, 2011
    NOTE: I know I already posted this exact thread already in the "iPad Accessories" forum, but I'm thinking that was not the right place for this thread and hence why I'm posting it here.

    I've been doing some research on what the ideal backup hard drive and personal media server solution for me would be and came across the following products that seem to fit the description:

    Apple Time Capsule (maybe?)
    WD My Book Live
    Seagate GoFlex Home Network Storage System
    Buffalo LinkStation Live

    Upon reviewing the information on the drives in questions to the best of my ability, there is still one critically important, lingering question I have that I can't find a clear answer to yet. Here is what I mean:

    Each of these brands (WD, Seagate, Buffalo) for their particular NAS product have their own respective iOS apps that allows the user to access the content of the NAS drive anywhere they happen to be connected to wi-fi. Does that mean the user has to sacrifice being able to play media files through the native Apple-brand iOS apps? To clarify, it sounds like while these NAS manufacturers provide anywhere access to the drive through their apps, that unfortunately means you can't use the native iOS apps to play and control the media on the NAS?

    Can I access my media files over a cellular network if I'm not able to get wi-fi access from a particular location?

    Finally, the Apple Time Capsule sounds like the ideal solution potentially. But in my research of the T.C., I simply never could get a simple, straight answer that confirms if the T.C. can offer the same anywhere access functionality as the other NAS drives I mentioned. Some sources say no while others yes, but neither explains why clearly or proves their statement.

    Someone please clarify and share if there is a way that the native iOS apps can play and control the media being streamed from a NAS drive.
  2. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    Hard to know how to answer without more specifics.

    Whether any file is accessible outside your LAN depends not just on your choice of NAS, but how your router and network is setup. You can use a Mac to make files available anywhere with internet access; you don't need anything special to do that. Depending on what kind of files they are they can be used by any appropriate application, whether on Android, iOS, linux, etc etc.

    If you're looking for something tightly integrated with Mac-specific applications and file formats, like DRM protected stuff playing over iTunes, then no, non-Apple stuff might not work. But a regular old MP3 can be accessed over the internet by anything.
  3. blueroom macrumors 603


    Feb 15, 2009
    Toronto, Canada
    Synology NAS's can do everything the OP wants.

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