In these days of online cloud storage, we’ve got many options. Its not just about storing files online, but its also about more features like synchronization, tracking file revisions, public file sharing, mobile apps and much more. Many old players like Dropbox already have these features, but there are some new players also. Dropbox is no doubt the most popular service for online storage and syncing files, but there are some other alternatives that are worth talking a look at. In this article, we’ll be comparing different cloud storage providers.
Since there are so many different service providers, a user can easily get confused. In this below table, you can easily interpret which features are present in a particular storage service.
Various Online Cloud Storage Services Compared
|Share Files Publicly||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||No||Upload via Email||No(1)||Yes||Yes||No||No||No||Yes||No||No||No||Access Files Online(2)||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Windows Vista & 7 Support||Yes||Yes||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Mac OS Support||Yes||Yes||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Linux Support||Yes||No||No||No||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||No|
- Dropbox doesn’t officially support uploading via Email. But you can use SendtoDropbox to upload files to Dropbox by Email.
- Access files online means that the service offers an easy to use web interface, from where you can upload as well as download files. Some services also offer additional features like copying public link, so that you can share that particular file with anyone.
- Pricing details are taken for the most cheapest plan that is offered by that service. PM refers to per month and PY refers to per year pricing. 4Sync, Minus and Droplr have not clearly mentioned whether they offer a paid plan to increase storage or not.
- Multilingual means that the website interface is offered for users not familiar with English language. For example, Pogoplug offers option to change language from English to Spanish, French, German and many more. This is definitely a plus point for non-English users.
The main aim of this comparison is give users an idea about the features of online cloud storage services. There are many such services and end users get confused as to which one is the best and which one suits their needs. This in-depth review should give you a clear idea about which one to select. Also consider the “pricing” factor. Some offer cheap storage while some charge hefty amount.
Apart from the above table, these services are also worth taking a look at:
Windows Live Mesh:
Windows Live Mesh is a part of Windows Live Essentials package. This is a file syncing tool offered by Microsoft. Sync your folders to the 5 GB of free storage space which you get with SkyDrive. As we know, SkyDrive provides total 25GB of space and from that 5GB can be utilized by Live Mesh. With this tool, you can keep your favorites in Internet Explorer and your Microsoft Office settings up to date on all of your PCs by syncing your program settings. All transfers are encrypted using the Transport Layer Security (TLS) or Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) protocols.
Here comes a shocking moment if you don’t know about ADrive. ADrive offers a whopping 50GB of online storage space for free. Yes, you don’t need to pay a buck for this. Features include easy file sharing publicly, folder upload, file download, remote file transfer and Zoho editor which allows users to edit word processing and spreadsheets online. ADrive desktop client is also available but only for paid plans which starts from $6.95 per month. Paid plans offer more features like FTP, file history, SSL encryption, support, removes advertisements and much more. Go ahead, try it out, just don’t forget that you have 50GB capacity until you run out of space (which would be in rare condition).
Wuala is a secure online storage made in Switzerland. With Wuala, you can store your files securely online, share them with selected other users, access files from anywhere, setup automatic backups of your local data, or synchronize complete folders to the cloud. All data is encrypted locally, before it is uploaded. Also your password is stored locally. Wuala is developed by LaCie, which is a manufacturer of external storage devices.
SpiderOak provides an easy and secure free online backup, sharing, sync, access & storage solution for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. The company also calls it as “zero-knowledge data encryption”. Features include:
- Safe, secure and automatic backup
- Centralize all your data across all platforms and devices
- Preserves all historical versions and deleted files
- Share selected folders with friends, family, colleagues, and clients
- Backup desktops, laptops, servers and network drives with one online service
- And more
Amazon Cloud Drive
Amazon Cloud Drive is Amazons offering which allows users to store files online, with a simple and clean online interface. It offers 5GB of free online storage to store your digital files. Store your music, videos, photos, and documents on Amazon’s secure servers. All you need is a web browser to upload, download, and access your files from any computer. However one thing to take note here is that this is not a Dropbox alternative and it does not allows us to sync files from computer. There is no desktop application. Therefore to upload and download files, you’ll always need to use a browser. There’s an advantage of using Cloud drive – when you save or upload your Amazon MP3 Store purchases to your Cloud Drive, they don’t take up any of your storage space and are always stored for free. That MP3 purchase doesn’t counts or adds towards the storage limit. If you need more storage space, then paid plans start from $20 per year for 20GB.
Ubuntu One is your personal cloud and this new service is offered by Canonical. Store and sync your files, photos, music, videos or just anything. This app is installed by default if you’re using Ubuntu. Windows users can download, install and start syncing files to the cloud. Files uploaded using the desktop app can also be accessed online, via a web interface.5GB free storage space is provided to all users, and if you crave for more space then you can go for paid plans starting from $2.99 per month for 20GB storage space. Ubuntu One desktop application is available for Windows and Linux platform. Mobile app is also available for Android, iPhone & iPad.
Know about any other such service that’s worth mentioning here? Lets hear it in the comments.