Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Hack Your Way Around Jolidrive's "Promote it" Access Requirement

I recently discovered +Jolidrive. I really like it.

If you're not familiar with the service, it organizes all your cloud data into one, simple interface. I didn't "get it" completely until I set it up. Basically, it recreates Finder functionality from Mac OS.

Note: I did not sign up by connecting to Facebook. I signed up via email. 

Since I use multiple cloud-based services, I really like the dashboard affect. I've also enabled the web apps which allow me to scroll through all my mission-critical apps on one screen. (I'm hoping Chrome OS adds some app management features soon. I'd really like to drag and drop apps to make folders like I can on my +Nexus 4.)

Here is what it looks like:

The last part of my set-up included replacing my standard new tab screen with Jolidrive. I was unsure of this decision but quickly moved passed that. It's a nice, time-saving feature.

One of the things you run into is the "promotion requirement" needed to unlock access to some of the apps. (As a marketer myself, it makes sense. It's an efficient way to create a lot of buzz.) But +Lifehacker and I agree on this: it's irritating that we are FORCED to promote it for access. Honestly, I would rather pay for access instead and promote it on my own terms.

Because I don't like being forced to do anything, I decided to hack my way around it.

Here is how I did it:

  1. You are given the option of sharing to Twitter, Facebook, or Google+. 
  2. I chose Google+. (You'll understand more in just a few more steps.)
  3. I opened Google+ in another tab in Chrome.
  4. I created a circle called "Jolidrive." (No one is in this circle...but me.)
  5. I shared each app that I wanted to unlock and activate to this circle.
  6. After each app was unlocked, I deleted the circle and the Google+ posts shared exclusively to the circle with no one in it.
  7. Then I went to my timeline and deleted all the posts. Remember, only I could see them anyway. (I didn't have to do this, but I am OCD. So...really...yes...I had to.)

Now I am on Day Three of using Jolidrive and absolutely love it! It has improved my Chromebook experience in a way that I suspect Google will offer in future updates of Chrome OS. For now, it's a great concept and—more important—it helps me be more productive.

What's been your experience with Jolidrive?