Review: Promise Technology's 'Apollo' Offers Private Cloud Storage for the Whole Family

Discussion in 'Guides, How Tos and Reviews' started by MacRumors, May 24, 2016.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Cloud-based services like iCloud and Dropbox are useful because they make documents, photos, and other media easily shareable and accessible anywhere, but there is a downside -- that content is stored offsite on an unknown server not under an individual user's control.

    With Apollo, a new personal cloud device launching today, Promise Technology aims to combine the cloud's ease of use with the security of local storage. The Apollo, Promise Technology's first consumer-facing product, is also the first network-attached storage option for families and small businesses, designed specifically to allow for multiple individuals to share dedicated storage space.

    The Apollo, priced at $299, is being sold exclusively through and in Apple retail stores starting on June 7.

    Design and Specs

    Apollo is a 4TB network-attached storage device, which plugs into a router to connect to a home (or small business) Wi-Fi network. The Apollo is compact and sleek looking, with an aesthetic that easily matches Apple's own line of devices. Made from a clean white plastic, the Apollo measures in at 5.6 inches by 7.5 inches and it is 2.4 inches thick with a rectangular shape.


    As seen in the photo below, it's not much taller than an iPhone 6s Plus, and it's similar in size to many home cable modems and routers. It includes a Gigabit Ethernet port, a USB 3.0 port (for plugging into a computer and for attaching an additional hard drive for backing up the Apollo), 1GB RAM, a 1GHz Marvell ARMADA 380 CPU, and the aforementioned 4TB SATA hard drive. In my testing, the Apollo was quiet during operation.

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    Article Link: Review: Promise Technology's 'Apollo' Offers Private Cloud Storage for the Whole Family
  2. joshwenke macrumors regular


    Mar 26, 2011
    You know when you see pictures of cats that Juli wrote the article.
  3. ArtOfWarfare macrumors G3


    Nov 26, 2007
    I was a little surprised that they're able to charge so little for that hardware...

    I guess the price of hard drives have come down a lot since the last time I checked though. Last I knew, 4 TB drives were $400. But now looking on Amazon, I see them for between $100 and $150. So I'm not very impressed anymore.

    Still a good deal compared to iCloud or Dropbox if you need that much storage space.

    Something that wasn't clear to me - is it integrated into Finder the way Dropbox is? Can I automatically sync files between computers with it?
  4. wlossw, May 24, 2016
    Last edited: May 24, 2016

    wlossw macrumors 65816


    May 9, 2012
    Montreal, Quebec, Canada
    perhaps you should add:

    Single disk (no redundancy) to the list of cons....
  5. punchwalk macrumors regular

    May 16, 2010
    Maryland, USA
    The price is good, but I don't understand why this is news. We have a several year-old NAS that does all of the things listed (and more). The only difference is that we had to supply our own hard drive(s).

    I'm also surprised that the author listed 4TB as a con. We have 2TB and have only filled 1/3 of the space.
  6. Fall Under Cerulean Kites macrumors 6502

    Fall Under Cerulean Kites

    May 12, 2016
    So, it’s a NAS. Tell me how this is different from my Synology Diskstation?
  7. knemonic macrumors 6502a

    Jan 14, 2009
    I like the idea of it, but the problem I see is the iOS app needs deep integration like Dropbox has with apps.

    I decided to start using my iPad to edit excel docs with the free app, and the only way to edit a doc in its place is through Dropbox and onedrive, and I've read one drive on the Mac is just horrible, crashes a lot, won't sync. You can use iCloud in excel, but you can't edit docs in their directory unless you subscriber to office 365, which I have no interest in doing. So I'm sort of forced to use Dropbox till Microsoft provides full iCloud support in excel for free.

    But this drive would be slick but you wouldn't be able to edit docs in its place, cause their app isn't really deeply integrated.

    Also, if the drive fails, you loose all your stuff, Dropbox and such at least give you peace of mind.
  8. jclo Editor


    Staff Member

    Dec 7, 2012
    Yes, it does add a folder to Finder that automatically syncs to it.
    --- Post Merged, May 24, 2016 ---
    It's simpler. I'd say for the average user, Diskstation is a bit complicated to use. This isn't. You plug it in and it works like Dropbox.
    --- Post Merged, May 24, 2016 ---
    Listed as a con because there aren't other options (smaller and larger). Some competing products have higher storage capacities as an option.
  9. TheRealTVGuy macrumors 6502a


    Jul 21, 2010
    Orlando, FL
    And there's nothing wrong with that.
    --- Post Merged, May 24, 2016 ---
    Damn, no Time Machine support! I was hoping this would allow me to ditch my Western Digital MyCloud. They experience service outages quite a bit, and their latest firmware/dashboard is really finicky too.

    Oh well, I'll bookmark these guys and keep an eye out for new features in the future.
  10. Barry Marshall macrumors member

    Barry Marshall

    Jan 11, 2016
    VPN Land
    What is the spin rate of the HD or is it a SSD
  11. knemonic macrumors 6502a

    Jan 14, 2009
    It sure ain't ssd at that size and price ha
  12. Boatboy24 macrumors 6502a

    Nov 4, 2011
    1 Infinite Loop
    It's cheaper (after you add drives). But no redundancy. I love my Synology. A mirror drive, and I have a portable hard drive plugged into it that takes all my Time Machine backups.

    If I'm not mistaken, WD has an almost identical product. Not sure of the pricing/space though.
  13. LegacyMacUser macrumors newbie


    Jun 15, 2011
    Does anyone know of a way to share files over the web if you have an Airport Extreme Base Station with a drive attached or a Time Capsule? I'm surprised that Apple hasn't come up with an application or settings in "Airport Utility" that would allow you to do that.
  14. OllyW Moderator


    Staff Member

    Oct 11, 2005
    The Black Country, England
    Apple would rather have you pay a monthly subscription for iCloud storage,
  15. jclo Editor


    Staff Member

    Dec 7, 2012
    I figure if people have to look at photos in a screenshot, I may as well treat them to cat pics.
  16. jayducharme macrumors 68040


    Jun 22, 2006
    The thick of it
    To me, the big drawback is that it's in my home and I have to maintain it. My home network is more fragile than iCloud or Dropbox. I guess for people with non-critical files who just want to share music, photos or videos, this might make sense.
  17. Sheza macrumors 68000


    Aug 14, 2010
    Cambridge, UK
    A very nice review in general, but the reviewer would benefit from enhanced knowledge of data transfer speeds over the internet.

    Firstly - I highly doubt the reviewer actually has an internet connection that is 120MB/s down and 6MB/s up. The more common notation for internet speeds is Mb/s (notice the smaller b) which I believe is a factor of 8 times smaller than MB/s. Were we to take the reviewer's notation literally, they would have speeds of 960Mb/s down (almost a Gigabit, which is almost the speed of the limited-availability Google Fibre product) and 48Mb/s up.

    An easy mistake to make but one that should be corrected nonetheless.

    Secondly - I don't think it was made clear enough in the review whether the upload speed testing was done via uploading something to the device whilst on the Local Area Network or not. If it was done with all devices connected to the network, one would assume that the product would be smart enough to utilise the network speed, not the internet connection itself, and thus the speed would be dictated by the reviewer's network hardware and any bottlenecks in the product itself. Fast speeds are to be expected here, as local area networks are often around 1Gbit in speed, compared to an actual internet connection. It would be interesting to see how fast the Apollo could receive a file off-site from somewhere with a faster upload speed.
  18. npmacuser5 macrumors 65816


    Apr 10, 2015
    What I do like about Apple and Dropbox type of cloud is the offsite data backup. Just what I need is someone getting into my house and taking all my devices and a big bonus my local backup. Or the really bad thing the house gets destroyed by some unfortunate event. Offsite has some negatives but also some real advantages.
  19. ZMacintosh macrumors 65816


    Nov 13, 2008
    It won't function the same, you need to enable Share Disks over WAN and connect to it like a regular server.
    don't expect to backup over WAN though.
  20. MyopicPaideia macrumors 68000


    Mar 19, 2011
    Trollhättan, Sweden
    I have a symmetric 1Gb/s up/down connection. It is awesome. The equivalent of $200 a month though...
  21. jclo Editor


    Staff Member

    Dec 7, 2012
    Thank you, I'll fix this error. It should indeed be Mb/s. As for the specific upload mentioned in the review, it was done while connected to my local network. I tested uploads and video streaming while away from home to make sure it worked and was relatively speedy, but did not upload huge files.
  22. Marshall73 macrumors 65816


    Apr 20, 2015
    Double the price of a 4TB WD cloud disk erm no. Plus no resilience is crap for a backup drive save your money and buy a proper NAS.
  23. Black Belt macrumors 6502a

    Black Belt

    Jun 15, 2007
    This isn't cloud storage, which has bulletproof backup and resiliency, this is a glorified hard disk with internet access.
  24. GSPice macrumors 68000


    Nov 24, 2008
    As much as I love giving extra thought to Apple "exclusive" products, this one's a non-starter for me:
    • Single drive; "backup" feature can't be compared to even a RAID 1 setup
    • Media server support; If I'm gonna NAS, I wanna Plex
    • Fragmented media workflow; I'm already in deep with Apple's Photos app, Lightroom, and Time Machine
  25. kaans macrumors member


    Nov 17, 2014
    Looks a lot like chinese based devices that you buy for cheap, they definitely failed on looks

    Go for brushed aluminium next time

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