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CloudMagic Offers Realtime Search Across Web Services; Usage Trends, Future Plans

CloudMagic is a Bangalore-based startup that offers an online search service to users for their personal data spread across various web services covering Google services (including Gmail, Google Docs, Contacts and Google Calendar), Twitter and Microsoft Exchange. The company claims to offer a near-instant search experience, ala Google Instant.

It currently offers browser extensions for Firefox, Google Chrome and Safari, mobile apps for iPhone and Android and a hosted version at Cloudmagic.com.

Product Roadmap: In conversation with MediaNama, Rohit Nadhani, co-founder of CloudMagic said that CloudMagic intends to be a single gateway search engine for an user’s personal data by acting as a central cloud repository which can be accessed across multiple devices. He feels this has become essential, since more and more user data is getting scattered across various web services and that there is no connection between these services.

In addition to search, CloudMagic also intends to allow users to perform certain actions on any data. For instance, one could reply to an email through the service or perform the usual twitter actions like reply or retweet.

How does it work? One can create an account with CloudMagic and provide OAuth access to CloudMagic to access content on the user’s behalf. Following this, CloudMagic polls for new data from Google, Twitter and Exchange servers every 2-3 minutes and create a search index to offer ranked relevant search queries to the user. Users can then make use of the service across multiple devices.

On Privacy Concerns: When we asked Rohit how the service takes care of user privacy, he responded that most of the data is anyway on the cloud, so it’s not something new what they are doing, and that it just involves a handshake between one cloud server and another cloud server. So, it ultimately boils down to the user’s trust on the product since one can raise the same question on privacy concerns regarding servers of any web company. That being said, he informed that CloudMagic follows all security practices and privacy policies that any company dealing with cloud data including Google or Facebook does, and that they have had 15 years experience in software development with Webyog, which makes data management tools for managing popular open-source databases.

CloudMagic’s Business Model & Monetization: Rohit said that CloudMagic was bootstrapped through the profits from Webyog. While CloudMagic itself isn’t making money yet, the company is considering various revenue models for the service. For instance, they could charge users based on number of services or data being used.

Services: CloudMagic currently offers support for Google and Google Apps Services including Gmail, Google Apps email, Docs, Contacts, Calendar, and Chat; Twitter Search, and Microsoft Exchange services including Exchange 2007, Exchange 2010 and Office 365 accounts. In the future, the company intends to introduce Facebook, LinkedIn, Evernote, Dropbox and Salesforce integration. He said that they have the ability to index any service which has a public API.

Usage Trends: Rohit said that Google services have been the most popular for them with 60% users, 40% of them being Google Apps users, followed by Twitter and Exchange services. However, he pointed out that Exchange search which was launched few weeks back, is currently seeing tremendous growth and there is a possibility that it may surpass Twitter quite soon.

Country Wise Market share:  Rohit claimed that CloudMagic is adding thousands of users every day, however he refused to share any details regarding the total user base. Usage is spread across 40% in United States, 20% in Japan, 30% in Western Europe and 10% for the rest of the world.

Extensions: Google Chrome is the most popular extension with 50% usage, followed by Firefox at 30% and Safari at 20%.

Mobile apps: Rohit claimed that email search on iPhone or Android devices is quite horrible since there is very less data stored on local cache (< 2 days) and the server search for emails is quite poor. Hence they ported their technology to mobile platform, launching Android and iPhone apps, with Windows Phone, Windows 8 and iPad clients coming in the future. On plans for a self-hosted version: While there were initial plans to launch a self hosted version, Rohit said that they dumped the plan since it would’ve become difficult to manage several instances for them and for the customers. So the company plans to keep CloudMagic as a hosted product.

Our Take: We tried the service on Google Chrome on OS X Lion and on an HTC Desire Z running Gingerbread and found that the service worked as promised. The results were near-instant and quite relevant. For instance, if you search for ‘Vikas SN’, you would find all emails, calendar events, docs and tweets mentioning my name. The results were also pretty dynamic in nature i.e. results change as you type your query, quite similar to how Google Instant works.

One noteworthy thing about CloudMagic’s Twitter search is that CloudMagic only indexes tweets that appear on your timeline, hence when you search for tweets, you will be essentially searching your own timeline rather than the entire tweet stream, which can come in handy quite a few times. We wonder why Twitter doesn’t offer such an option natively yet.

That being said, one of the biggest roadblocks that the company may face is gaining trust of users and corporate customers since they may not be that willing to offer access to their email inboxes and other sensitive data.

Other Similar Products: Greplin also indexes information from Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, Yammer, LinkedIn and Salesforce and allows users to search for information. Backupify also allows users to archive information from Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, and WordPress.

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    © 2008-2018 Mixed Bag Media Pvt. Ltd. Developed By PixelVJ