Microsoft recently released a major update for desktop and laptops, the Windows 8.1. Among many of its new features is the deeper integration with SkyDrive, an online storage service. With the original Windows 8 OS, users typically used SkyDrive for just as a cloud storage option.

Now they can use it for automatic, online backup; which allows them to carry important settings from one computer to another. This could result in the appearance of new web-centric Windows 8.1 laptop models, with minimal local storage options. This could put pressure on producers of mechanical hard drives, such as Western Digital and Seagate.

With SKyDrive, users no longer need a physical medium to transfer files from one PC to another. Users don’t even need to concern themselves with the process of uploading files to the cloud, the system does that automatically. Users can always sign into any PC with a Microsoft account to access the SkyDrive cloud storage.

Despite the rise of cloud storage, hard drives may not go away anytime soon, especially in less developed areas, where Internet connection is mediocre at best. But in the UK, with its better infrastructure; companies like Seagate could find it problematic to maintain sales of physical hard drives.

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