Like its competitors, OneDrive offers an automatic photo-backup feature — and it’s actually pretty great. The Photo menu does a good job of automatically grouping your image files according to some predefined tags. For example, one of our testers went pond fishing this past spring, and the pictures of him in a boat were tagged “#Outdoor” and the landscape photos of the lake were tagged “#Waterfront.” OneDrive’s browser client even lets you ship image files directly to the nearest Walgreens for prints when you want them.
Today, as far as file sharing goes, we have nearly endless options. Dropbox, Box, Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive and Hightail – formerly YouSendIt – are among the services that enable you to share big files easily, as well as store them in the cloud, sync them across multiple devices, and collaborate on them with colleagues and clients. But there are plenty of others, ranging from basic services for consumers (Amazon Drive) to security-conscious, enterprise-level services (Tresorit). The services we've chosen are listed here in alphabetical order and focus on 10 that cover the range of options available. (This isn’t an exhaustive catalog of all services.) To check file transfer times for each, we uploaded a 195MB ZIP file using a connection with an average 11.88 megabit/second upload speed.
Amazon Drive’s unlimited storage plan was discontinued last year. Even so, the service, formerly known as Cloud Drive, is still one of the best deals around, with a 1TB plan costing $60 a year. There are the requisite desktop and mobile apps for accessing and sharing files. But overall, Amazon Drive offers only basic functionality. You can sync your entire Documents folder from your computer, for instance, but you can’t choose specific folders within that folder to sync. Upload speed (nearly 8 minutes) was by far the slowest of all services tested. Amazon Drive is best suited for photo backup (with unlimited photo storage for Prime members) and basic document storage and file sharing for consumers on a budget.
Annoyingly, to get your 3GB of free storage space you have to try out a free trial of the 'Premium' package which costs £8/US$10.42 per month. This doesn't mean you have to pay, as you can choose to revert to the Basic account, but we don't like this mechanism and it stands out when compared to almost every other cloud storage service we've tested.
And cloud storage is just the beginning. ShareFile makes it easy to get files to the cloud with desktop file sync and from there you can securely transfer files to clients and colleagues, send encrypted email messages or even create a custom branded client portal to let them access important documents from anywhere. See why thousands of business around the world use ShareFile. Try it free today!
This cloud data protection service features enterprise-level backup features, including large storage capacities, advanced retention policies and bare metal recovery. Storage Guardian supports hybrid systems for faster recovery in the event of an internet outage. It can also backup virtual machines and several other cloud storage and file sharing platforms, including Microsoft Office 365 and Google Drive.
The best solution is one that empowers users to share their content easily with others within their organization, and to invite external users to participate, while also giving the IT administrators full visibility and ultimate authority over security of the content. Hosting the files on-premises rather than in the cloud removes risk and leverages the existing corporate infrastructure security investment. The solution retains the "feel" of the cloud as end users share and access files via a web browser, preserving the fast, easy workflows of cloud sharing.
What could possibly go wrong? Human error accounts for a good deal of cloud storage tragedies, but the dropped internet connection is another common troublemaker. Ask around (or just look through our review comments), and you'll hear sad stories of how cloud storage can go wrong. One of the benefits of paying for an account is that it usually comes with additional support from the provider, so if anything does go wrong, you can get someone on the phone to help you resolve the issue.
Design-wise, the interface is clean, simple to understand, and when you finish the initial install the app immediately starts a backup of your system. We’d like to see the options of which folders you want in the cloud appearing first, but it’s an easy thing to quickly rectify. Still, presumptuous software is something that never finds us overjoyed.
Need big business cloud storage at small business-friendly prices? Zoolz gives small businesses access to powerful cloud storage without the sticker shock. Unlike its competitors, Zoolz comes with unlimited users and servers, making it easy to scale the service to your business's needs. There are also no caps on your upload/download bandwidth speeds or file sizes, so you don't have to worry about not being able to use the service when you need it most. Zoolz also offers "Tribrid" backup service which combines your local backup, their instant storage and cold storage.
Dropbox is still a good choice thanks to the sheer number of platforms it supports. Tresorit and pCloud are two services that deserve a lot of attention. Security is a very important consideration these days and both of these manage to provide encryption in a way that doesn’t interrupt a normal workflow and is easy to manage - especially in the paid versions.
There are multiple reasons to use cloud storage services. Maybe your local hard drives are running low on disk space, in which case you can use the cloud as extra storage. If you want to be able to stream your music collection from anywhere, access your work files at home, easily share vacation videos, etc., you can upload your files online to a cloud storage service. Another reason to use cloud storage is if you want to keep important files secure behind a password and encryption.
Controlling permissions varies from product to product. Some solutions offer a highly granular hierarchy of permissions. In addition to the ability to define job roles and assign access based on that, multiple nested groups can be established. Adding or removing permissions is an easy affair once they're properly defined. Other products opt for a more simplified approach.
Apple's iCloud service includes iCloud Photo Sharing, which lets you share images and video with friends, family, and colleagues on an iPhone, iPad, Mac, PC, or Apple TV. While technically considered part of iCloud Photo Library, iCloud Photo Sharing exists outside of the service: You don't have to use iCloud Photo Library to share your images, and shared albums don't count toward your iCloud storage.
File sharing and syncing features are the foundation of a cloud storage service. You’ll more than likely going to use them first because syncing will get your files to the cloud while sharing files will help you, well, share them with others. Most of the services use the common model of sync developed by Dropbox in 2007. Read more about it in our Dropbox review.