Sunday, July 3, 2016 [Tweets] [Favorites]

Eye-Fi Demonstrates the Danger of Cloud-Dependent Hardware

Glenn Fleishman:

Are you concerned about the long-term viability of devices that fall under the loose notion of the Internet of Things (IoT), in which a cloud connection is required to keep devices functioning? If so, a move by Eye-Fi, which makes SD cards that could automatically transfer newly taken photos to a cloud service, should give you pause. It sure did for me.

In September 2016, the company will discontinue support for features and Web apps for every model of card it shipped from its launch in 2007 up to the X2 models introduced in 2011 and sold through retail channels until March 2015. Only its Mobi line, introduced in 2013, will retain active support. Eye-Fi said in an email to customers the impetus for this move is the obsolescence of “Internet security and authentication mechanisms that were state-of-the-art in 2007 when we built them into our products but have since proven to be vulnerable.” Because these are hardware problems, the company can’t just push firmware upgrades out.

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But while Eye-Fi says it began to phase out the last products that are affected starting in 2012, it allowed them to remain in retail sales channels until March 2015.

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