I’ve written about Bevy a few times and over the past few weeks I’ve had the opportunity to put an actual unit through the paces. Bevy is put out there as a smart photo storage system, and they are working with Intel or rather powered by them. Lineage Labs is the company behind Bevy and they designed this device as a photo storage solution for families. It can be accessed from mobile applications for both iOS and Android, plus with several ports and plugs on the Bevy itself, they offer many ways to get your photos onto the system. From there it is all about accessing those images and doing what you want with them.
As we have seen this year, the cloud is still big, with Apple’s Photos application, Google Photos, and even Facebook coming in as top places to store photos. Is there still room for a physical device that creates somewhat of a cloud of your own, this is the question I tackled in my full review. Keep reading to see my full thoughts on the Bevy.
Bevy itself is not that big of a device, but it does required a direct connection for power via a wall adapter. It comes in three color choices for you to choose from, those being blue, purple, and black. The color will only be shown on the top with a nice silver build around the sides. The device does have some weight to it and is a bit bigger than the 4th generation Apple TV. You will find vents to cool down the technology on the inside on three of the four sides.
In terms of ports on the Bevy, you will find an audio jack, four USB ports, an SDxc card slot, a Kensington lock, an optical audio jack, an ethernet port, a VGA port, an HDMI port, and lastly a power adapter port. Clearly, Bevy understands that there are plenty of ways to get your photos on the device and to share them, they choose to put plenty of ports on the device.
I think that the average consumer, when looking for a way to store their photos, like for something that is simple and just does it. These are why tools like Google Photos and Apple’s Photos are great, they just work. You sign into them and they will automatically back up your photos to the cloud. And even though we are in 2015, the cloud can still scare some people, especially with the security issues that we have seen. Although, knock on wood, Google, and Apple are pretty darn good with security and keep your data safe.
Bevy doesn’t necessarily say uploading them to a virtual cloud is a bad thing, but they want to give you a cloud of your own. It is accessible from the Bevy applications for iOS, Android, and your computers. It comes with either one or two terabytes of storage inside, and you can load photos onto the Bevy from several different sources. Via the mobile application, you create a user account and setup the Bevy to your network, it can be connected to your WiFi network or via ethernet. In future iterations of Bevy, as this is variant 1.0, I would hope that they make it clearer when setting the device up. As being able to access the photos on the go, can be difficult depending on how you set up the Bevy to a network.
On the mobile application side, it is pretty simple but the application needs to be open to send your photos to the Bevy itself and this can take some time. Bevy will allow you to choose an auto-upload mode which will let you send all of your photos on the device and all future ones you take to the Bevy, or you can select certain photos to be uploaded. You can also use the Bevy desktop applications to send photos to the device from your computer, you can just drag and drop. From there you will be able to see them from the Bevy application your smartphone.
A big feature of the Bevy that hasn’t been seen from other cloud storage services would be multi-user accounts. And this is where Bevy truly offers a unique and innovative feature. By allowing each family member to have his or her own account they can choose who has access to the photos they upload. From there you can share those photos with specific people and even create guests accounts. By having these multiple user accounts, Bevy allows you to have the option to share your photos with all users or to only share with who you want. This is a largely requested feature that hasn’t been added yet to these big virtual cloud options, but Bevy has it in their first version.
Another feature with Bevy that is not out there from other solutions is the ability to pop an SD card or a USB drive with photos on it directly into the Bevy, from there using the mobile application you can sync the photos from these storage solutions to the Bevy. Thus making them available in the cloud, or should we call it the physical cloud. You can even back up the photos on the Bevy by plugging an external hard drive into the device or by using Bevy’s forthcoming cloud backup service.
The Bevy positions itself as a family photo storage system and it achieves this, especially with the multiple user accounts. This has to be the biggest and most important feature of the device. It truly allows you to share photos and videos with anyone and everyone. Even those who are not part of the family, as you can choose specific people for your albums to be shared with. The Bevy easily allows you to see all your photos as well, plus they will organize it for you.
The only issue with Bevy would be the price as it is on the higher end. You can get the one terabyte model for $299.99 or the two terabyte model for $349.99. But if you have tried out different backup solutions for photos and videos, the Bevy clearly has some unique advantages that differentiate it from the other options on the market. Click here to check out Bevy from Lineage Labs. We would like to thank Lineage Labs for providing us with a unit of “Bevy” for our review.