Backblaze, an online backup service that I described as Online Backup With Time Machine’s Finesse, has released a Mac version of its software in private beta. TechCrunch readers can grab one of 500 invites here.
Backblaze costs $5 a month or $50 a year for unlimited online storage for backing up your hard drive, with a 15-day free trial available. The service continuously monitors files for changes and uploads them to the server, and in the event of a hard drive failure allows users to selectively download files via a web interface or have them delivered on DVDs or a USB drive. Unlike some other backup solutions, Backblaze emphasizes simplicity, allowing users to begin backing up in only a few button clicks with a minimal amount of setup (though it does have advanced features – they’re just hidden by default).
Backblaze may be a harder sell on the Mac than it is on Windows, as Time Machine (the best backup utility I’ve ever used) is already included in the most recent version of the operating system. Online backup has some advantages over local storage (its disks aren’t open to theft or destruction during a flood or fire), but for most people the deciding factor will be simplicity, and it takes far longer to backup via the web than over USB.