Microsoft SkyDrive is a free cloud service that offers users 25GB of storage. SkyDrive is great for users because all they need to do is log in with their Windows Live accounts, and from there they can invite anyone they want to share data. This approach makes it hard for IT to control SkyDrive. If IT pros want a more secure Microsoft offering that still gets the file-sharing job done, they should consider SharePoint. With SharePoint, users still have an easy way to share documents with others, and IT benefits from better corporate integration.
One issue that information experts, computer scientists and entrepreneurs debate is the concept of data ownership. Who owns the data stored in a cloud system? Does it belong to the client who originally saved the data to the hardware? Does it belong to the company that owns the physical equipment storing the data? What happens if a client goes out of business? Can a cloud storage host delete the former client's data? Opinions vary on these issues.
Dropbox is one of the oldest cloud storage services. It maintains all customer files in one location, thus enabling any device to access them anytime and from anywhere. It offers 2GB of free storage and paid plans of 1TB of storage for $8.25 per month and 2TB for $16.58. For $20 a month, Dropbox offers unlimited storage for businesses on a per-user basis.

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Google Drive is a good option if you're already invested in the Google ecosystem. Chances are you already have a Google account and are already using it, but if you're not, then creating an account is free and nets you 15GB of space to start with. Google storage takes into account all of your stuff from Gmail, Photos, and Drive, so depending on how you're using Google services, it may fill up quick (Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides don't count). Google Drive's pricing tiers are as follows:
Organizations can choose between off-premises and on-premises cloud storage options, or a mixture of the two options, depending on relevant decision criteria that is complementary to initial direct cost savings potential; for instance, continuity of operations (COOP), disaster recovery (DR), security (PII, HIPAA, SARBOX, IA/CND), and records retention laws, regulations, and policies.[12]

After a broad first pass of all cloud-based software solutions out there, we compiled a list of 45 different providers. To narrow it down to the best online storage sites, we surveyed people who use the service, read reviews from top technology blogs, dissected user guides and toyed with settings. We then spent a week testing them all on four different operating systems (OS, Windows, iOS, and Android) and on seven different devices. We updated files, shared a ton of pictures, and installed a bunch of apps. We even used Google Drive to write and edit this review.
Saves time. Business owners and the average person can save a great deal of time, thanks to sharing files via the cloud. Now, there’s no need to save the files to a device, transport that device and insert that device into a computer in order to access the files. With just a few clicks of a button, files can instantly be shared. Talk about a huge time saver.

Google Drive is one of the most respected and popular cloud storage apps available. Users get 15GB free out of the gate with unlimited photo and video backup via Google Photos if they so choose (with the proper quality settings). There is also an assortment of office apps available for documents, note taking, spreadsheets, and presentations. You can upgrade to 100GB ($1.99/month) or 1TB ($9.99) for fairly cheap and there is an option for 10TB as well ($99.99 per month). The office apps and cloud storage combo is a potent one and one that competitors have a hard time beating.
Google Drive offers centralized storage for any type of file. It offers 15GB of free storage for three Google products: Photos, Gmail, and Drive. Paid plans include (a) $1.99 per month for 100GB of storage, (b) $10 per month for 1TB, and (c) a data-storage plan of $100 per month for 100TB. Google is upgrading the data service to a new product called Google One. It will offer storage as well as access to Google experts.
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Features: Knowing what features your cloud storage service supports is essential in choosing the right one for you. A comparison of the top free cloud storage services can help you decide between a few of the better ones. Beyond that, do some research on the company's websites to see what they offer, like if they support streaming media files from their website or mobile app, if that's something you require.

If you want to build your business around Google Drive, you can do that too. Google Drive for Work includes unlimited storage for files, folders, and backups for $8 per user per month plus $0.04 per GB. With it, you can sync all your business files, including Microsoft Office files, across your computer, smartphone, and tablet to access your work whenever you need it.

When your family sets up purchase sharing, all new iTunes, Apple Books, and App Store purchases will be billed to the organizer’s account. But the organizer can still call the shots. Just turn on Ask to Buy for children in the family. When a child initiates a purchase, an alert is sent to the organizer, who can review the download and approve or decline it right from the organizer’s device. This applies to both purchases and free downloads.


Everyone should use Google Drive. Not the paid plan, necessarily, but Google lets anyone store as many photos (up to 16MP) and videos (up to 1080p resolution) for free. Free! Toss in Google’s extremely smart machine-learning photo search powers, and it’s a true no-brainer. It also offers top-notch real-time collaboration, thanks to Google Docs and its other productivity tools. The interface isn’t exactly elegant, but at least it’s reliable. One more quick note: Before you pay up for Drive, know that it gives you 15GB of free space, in addition to all that photo and video storage, which may be all you need.
Dropbox is one of the oldest cloud storage services. It maintains all customer files in one location, thus enabling any device to access them anytime and from anywhere. It offers 2GB of free storage and paid plans of 1TB of storage for $8.25 per month and 2TB for $16.58. For $20 a month, Dropbox offers unlimited storage for businesses on a per-user basis.

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iCloud also acts as a media sharing hub that works closely with Apple’s cloud-based productivity suite, iWork. It includes a word processor, among other things that can be shared with other iCloud users, all with an interface that looks a bit cleaner and more modular than Google Docs. Still, Apple can’t compete with Google’s price point or the universality of Google accounts.

It’s a good idea to look at what types of encryption (in-transit and at-rest are customary now) and authentication methods are offered, and it also wouldn’t hurt to look into the company’s history with handling user data. Also, it’s important to check whose handling your data. Some companies have their own data centers to store user data, while others toss information to third-parties. Because of this, we suggest rummaging the service level agreements to see where and how your data is being stored — your cloud company’s reputation might not be the only one you need to evaluate.
Google’s G Suite could work, which starts at $5 per user for a shared pool of 30GB of cloud storage, or $10 per user for unlimited storage (if you have more than five users; 1TB per user if you have fewer than five). If you want others to be able to upload and download files seamlessly in your cloud, you’ll need to create accounts for them—otherwise, they’ll just be able to download files. This could get costly, and not really solve the spending issue you identified in your letter.
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!
SoonR is another popular cloud offering that gives you tools for sharing files across multiple devices and platforms. One big difference here is that the only free thing about SoonR is its 30-day trial period; after that, the premium plan ($9.99/month) enables you to share 25GB of storage with three team members. You can also upgrade your account to a Pro account ($29.99/month), which increases your team members to five and your storage space to 100GB.

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4. Evernote: saves all of your notes, web clips, files, scanned documents, and images. You can search for the documents by keyword, access them from any device, and share them with friends. The storage process here is a little different: free users can store up to 100,000 notes (up to 25 mb each), 250 synchronized notebooks, 10,000 tags, and 100 saved searches.
In terms of sharing data, at a minimum, this should take the form of a sync client, meaning software that resides on each registered client and which takes care of making sure data in the cloud is synced with any local replicas. But it can also have other points of access. For instance, Microsoft OneDrive for Business syncs with the Team sites that are part of the popular Microsoft SharePoint collaboration platform, while Box for Business offers a fully functional web client with drag-and-drop support. Shared data can be stored in folders originated by individuals or in team folders that are created by team leads or administrators (and are accessible to anyone on the team). Some version of team folders should be considered a necessary component of any business-grade cloud storage app. By creating central points of collaboration that don't originate from any one user, it becomes easier to grant and revoke access as well as pass on ownership when an individual leaves the organization or changes divisions.
Ensuring that information is auditable is paramount to meeting corporate obligations. Losing mission-critical files due to mistakes or misconduct can often cost hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars in reparations or lost capital. Document retention is often a requirement in legal matters as well. In heavily regulated industries, having the right information on hand can often mean the difference between being in or out of compliance with federal or industry-specific regulations. All of this means that, before you purchase any cloud service, you need to sit down with your IT staff and your compliance expert, and then map out exactly where data and apps need to be located in order to pass the compliance regulations that are important to your business.
Also known as mobile cloud storage, personal cloud storage is a subset of public cloud storage that applies to storing an individual's data in the cloud and providing the individual with access to the data from anywhere. It also provides data syncing and sharing capabilities across multiple devices. Apple's iCloud is an example of personal cloud storage.
Recovery of lost files. If a file is corrupted or lost, there is no need to panic when using the cloud. Cloud computing providers are able to resolve issues with damaged or lost files that have been shared, which not only saves you from panicking, but it also saves a lot of time (just another way that time can be saved by sharing files via the cloud.)
The availability, durability, and cost benefits of cloud storage can be very compelling to business owners, but traditional IT functional owners like storage, backup, networking, security, and compliance administrators may have concerns around the realities of transferring large amounts of data to the cloud. Cloud data migration services services such as AWS Import/Export Snowball can simplify migrating storage into the cloud by addressing high network costs, long transfer times, and security concerns.
Upgrading to the Personal Pro plan will cost you £80/US$10 per month, earning you 100GB of storage and a file size limit of 5GB, or you could switch to the Starter business plan for £4/US$5 per month, which also offers 100GB, a slightly lower 2GB file size, but works with teams of 3-10 people, supports document encryption, granular permissions and stores previous versions of any file.
Who doesn't use Dropbox? Sure, its free storage is only 2GB, but you can use it on any platform. You can get to your files from Dropbox's website, desktop applications for Mac, Windows, and Linux, their native files systems, and the iOS, Android, BlackBerry, and Kindle Fire mobile apps. It's a snap to set up, and you don't need to worry about syncing files for a second.

Quick take: That 10GB of free storage is generous compared with the plans of other services on this list. Box also offers a Personal Pro plan with 100GB of storage for $10 per month. Box lacks features such as tagging powered by artificial intelligence and photo-editing software, however. And you have to pay the monthly fee to unlock the automatic uploading feature.


Syncing the latest file to everybody’s folder across many devices is a great way to distribute content and ensure people have access to the latest file.  However, challenges arise when edits are made and multiple people are collaborating and changing the same file.  Peoples hard work can be overwritten if you’re not implementing robust collaboration tools.  These popular and well-known cloud storage platforms don’t have robust features to support a secure collaboration process such as “Check-in and Check-out”. Within a manufacturing company, this should be a requirement when choosing a file management provider. CAD assembly files can have many contributors and are regularly edited by various teams.  Depending on the magnitude and complexity of your file, you may have teams working on different modules within the same assembly file performing alterations at the same time. without secure collaboration features such as the ability to check out a portion of an assembly, you are limited to locking down the whole file permitting only one person to edit.  without robust collaboration tools users resort to tedious file naming procedures that are not only time-consuming but ineffective – related errors include purchasing from the wrong bill of materials or even manufacturing from the wrong file version.
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Quick take: Nikon’s free basic plan includes 2GB of storage, but Nikon camera owners can access up to 20GB of free storage in the company’s Image Space service. (Both options accept photos only.) There are no paid storage tiers. Those who own certain Nikon cameras, such as the D7100 and D5600, can also store an unlimited number of photos, scaled down to 2MB, using the Nikon SnapBridge app.
If you’re comfortable dealing with a more manual approach, you can always pick up a great NAS box—a network-attached storage device—and use that to host your data. It shouldn’t be that tricky to set up user accounts for your clients and launch some kind of online portal they can use to view, send, and download files. (Or you can grant them access to a simple FTP server, if you want.) You could also setup your own dedicated server, but that’s a bit more complex than a NAS box.
Traditionally, businesses of all sizes and industries would store all their important files on a special computer called a server that they housed and operated themselves. Cloud file storage solutions like ShareFile allow your business to store important files on secure servers that you can access through the internet. While this may not seem like a huge difference, it can have profound effects for your business.

Assuming you can convince your clients to adopt a new solution for file management—which might involve taking deliverables outside of their control (their cloud storage) and keeping it on a solution you set up—then I agree, it makes the most sense to consolidate everything you’re doing to a single service, rather than having to deal with a bunch of services simultaneously.
Amazon FSx uses SSD storage to provide the fast performance your Windows applications and users expect, with high levels of throughput and IOPS, and consistent sub-millisecond latencies. This compatibility and performance is particularly important when moving workloads that require Windows shared file storage, like CRM, ERP, and .NET applications, as well as home directories.
For instance, Amazon offers 100GB for $12 per year. That’s double the storage space available from Apple’s iCloud for the same price. However, if you own a MacBook, an iPad, or an iPhone, you may prefer to remain within the Apple ecosystem for access to apps such as Pages or Sheets. The same holds true for fans of the Microsoft and Google ecosystems. In the end, paying a bit of a premium might be worth it to keep things simple.

We are a startup that has to shares lots of large media files with clients. Since we use G Suite and have email for our company thereby hosted with Google, naturally instead of paying for other services, we wanted to leverage all the features. Unfortunately we found Google Drive very frustrating to use. First, you can’t share Team Drive folders publicly without the user also creating/logging into a Google account. You have to make a dupe set of the files on a non-team drive. Second, when downloading lots of files, the zip process can take forever. And finally we found moving/copying larges groups of files around to have erratic behavior with files not showing up in destinations folders for a long time and no progress indicator for the copy/move process.
Total Cost of Ownership. With cloud storage, there is no hardware to purchase, storage to provision, or capital being used for "someday" scenarios. You can add or remove capacity on demand, quickly change performance and retention characteristics, and only pay for storage that you actually use. Less frequently accessed data can even be automatically moved to lower cost tiers in accordance with auditable rules, driving economies of scale.
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