SugarSync, a file syncing product that we may have all forgotten in our rush to glorify Dropbox has been rolling out a steady stream of improvements and, as of 11am today, it will offer an API so mobile applications can use SugarSync shared storage. The API information will live at SugarSync.com/Developers when it goes up today.
The API essentially creates a “bridge between local devices and the cloud.” In plain English, this would allow a developer to offload storage to a SugarSync server – think a photo application that can upload and display public links immediately or, barring that, a sort of shared workspace that would allow disparate programs to work on the same files in locked down OSes like iPhone OS and Windows Phone 7. The apps don’t have to be mobile – it works in web and desktop contexts as well – and access to the API is free.
Developers can also make money by getting a cut of new subscribers who sign up for the service. SugarSync is also running a contest for new apps. You can check it out at the dev website. There are also a few caveats:
Can we leverage free SugarSync accounts?
Yes! While our free accounts don’t have all of the functionality of our premium version, there are still many things you can do with your app and a free SugarSync account.
Your app may create maximum of one free account per user, and it cannot bridge or connect two separate accounts. Initially, you will have access to 5000 free accounts. If you run out or believe your audience will tap those out quickly, please contact us and we’re happy to work with you.
Man, if you can sell 5000 apps and convince people to use them properly, I’m happy to work with you.
Unlike many services that “get an API,” SugarSync seems to know what they’re doing. There is a need for open, potentially free space in the cloud and because they offer a concrete “service” instead of a nebulous spurt of API hand-waving, I say good on them.