In brief

  • Storj Labs has launched Tardigrade, an enterprise-level cloud storage service.
  • The decentralized network decrypts files before splitting and distributing them.
  • Tardigrade advertises lower rates than Google and Amazon’s cloud services.

Following several months of testing, Storj Labs today announced the general availability of Tardigrade, a decentralized cloud storage service designed for enterprise users.

Tardigrade’s network spans thousands of global nodes, with uploaded files decrypted and split into smaller pieces before being distributed widely. The pricing is more affordable than Amazon and Google’s respective cloud services, according to the Tardigrade website, and the open-source service is compatible with Amazon S3.

Meanwhile, anyone can apply to host a node and earn money by sharing storage and bandwidth for distributed files. According to Storj Labs’ interim CEO and executive chairman Ben Golub, Tardigrade is an evolution of the company’s original network, which struggled with scalability.

“Two years ago, we started rebuilding our decentralized cloud storage network from scratch,” he wrote in a blog post. “Our previous network reached more than 150 petabytes of data stored across more than 100,000 nodes—however our offering struggled to scale beyond those numbers, and we didn’t see it would deliver enterprise-grade parameters. It was a tough decision to make, but we can proudly say our rebuild was well worth the effort.”

Storj Labs began working through a series of qualification gates for Tardigrade last August, as explained in Golub’s post. The company aimed to meet certain benchmarks—including several months of 100% file durability and having enterprise-grade Service Level Agreements (SLAs)—before launching widely.

Tardigrade is similar in approach to Filecoin, albeit with more of an enterprise-level focus. Filecoin raised $257 million in a 2017 initial coin offering (ICO), yet has delayed its mainnet launch—most recently due to the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) in China, where some 70% of its nodes are based.