More than a million users signed up for Kim Dotcom's new Mega cloud service in the first 24 hours since launch.
Dotcom, who is not exactly known as a shy and understated man, timed the launch to mark the first anniversary of the Megaupload raid. The event itself was pretty tacky, but it got a lot of coverage and some punters are already describing Mega as one of the fastest growing startups in history. Taste aside, Dotcom clearly knows what he's doing.
Over 100,000 users signed up within an hour of the official launch and just a few hours later the number hit 250,000. Dotcom tweeted that the initial frenzy was too much for Mega's servers to handle and said the outfit is already working to secure more capacity.
Dotcom's checkered past probably helped the new site gain a lot of traction and free publicity, but Mega seems to be about more than hype. The service claims to offer top notch privacy and security. In addition, Mega offers up to 50GB of free storage and three competitively priced Pro packages for the discerning user. The top tier Pro III package offers 4TB of storage and 8TB of bandwidth for €29.99 (roughly $40) a month, while Pro I and II packages offer 500GB and 2TB of storage for €9.99 (roughly $14) and €19.99 (roughly $25) per month respectively.
In a recent interview with Reuters, Dotcom tried to shake off the notion that the new service will have anything to do with piracy.
"This is not some kind of finger to the US government or to Hollywood," Dotcom told Reuters. "Legally, there's just nothing there that could be used to shut us down. This site is just as legitimate and has the right to exist as Dropbox, Boxnet and other competitors."
Mega will allow users to encode their files before they upload them and each will be issued a 2048-bit decryption key, allowing them to share the files as they please. Mega will therefore have no access to the files and will not be exposed to any possible liability if the users choose to use it for piracy.