Now a days, we have multiple options to host important files, pictures, documents on cloud storage. It is critical to take backup of local files to save somewhere else so that you can restore when required. Cloud storages are also beneficial in case you want those files on different devices. With online sync and multiple platform apps, these cloud storage platforms are offering easy access to all stored file anywhere, anytime using Internet.
With the recent launch of Google Drive, the exiting players of cloud storage industry has started feeling the heat. Cloud storage leaders like Dropbox, Amazon Cloud Drive and Windows Live SkyDrive are looking for ways to separate themselves from each other including Google Drive by targeting different segments.
In this article, I will try my best to compare Google Drive, SkyDrive, Dropbox, Apple iCloud, Amazon Cloud Drive, SugarSync and Box.net. I will talk about the amount of storage that you get without paying a penny and then premium for extra space offered by these players. I will also cover the benefits, disadvantages and exclusive features offered by different applications.
It is one of the most important feature that a user expect from cloud storage provider. The first question which comes in mind after knowing about a cloud storage service is that how much free space they offer. Here is a free space comparison chart which includes all popular cloud storage service provider.
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Note – Dropbox users can get extra 16GB free storage by referring their friends to sing-up for Dropbox.
Apart from the storage limit, single file upload limit is also very important when you think of uploading a bulky file. Here is how these players stand in max upload limit for individual upload.
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After picking the best suitable cloud storage service out of these players, you start using it. There is a chance that you may need extra space to save your important files. In any case, if you want to have bulky files like videos, audio files, purchased copy of games and software, multiple pictures, you may cross the free storage offered by these players. Or in case you are taking backup of your complete system on a secured cloud, you may need more space.
You need to pay for the extra space on these cloud storages. The price differs on every cloud storage providers and it is up to you to decide which is cheap and best for you.
Here is the price comparison of cloud storages for extra space (i.e. for more than the free space offered).
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Desktop based software is good to upload or download files as it is easier to do that using a separate and dedicated application. But now a days, the browser is also very powerful and it offers similar features as a desktop client. Cloud storage providers are fully aware of that and that’s why they offer a desktop client as well as web interface to manage the uploaded files.
Web interface is for all platforms (i.e. accessible on all operating systems) but desktop clients may have compatibility issues. Here is the chart to showcase the availability of desktop clients from these cloud storages for different operating systems.
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When you are storing an important document on these cloud storage solutions, you may think of editing them there only, and save the changes. When you know that the list of service providers include Microsoft and Google who owns documentation products like Microsoft Office and Google Docs, it is a very basic expectation from them to provide online document editing on cloud.
Here is how these cloud storage providers stand on online editing of documents on cloud.
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You must be thinking if you can edit the document, may be others can also do the same with proper permission. Here is how these players stand when you think of sharing stored files with your colleague or clients and you both working together on the same cloud stored document.
In this chart, you can see whether share and collaborate is possible with these cloud storage solutions.
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Online Cloud Storage industry is getting better and better everyday. Now you have option to store, edit and share files online. Out of the services compared in this article, I think Dropbox is good for personal usage for multiple devices and it is easier to upload and sync files on different devices. But again, Google Drive and SkyDrive are really good for storing email attachments, files and documents as they provide better online editing tools. Amazon Cloud Drive is good for storage and to back up of important files and reside them for a long time.
Apple iCloud is good for Mac and iOS users but you have multiple options to store files. iTunes backup on iCloud is a good feature. Box.net (or box.com) is a really good option to business or enterprise users.
That’s why I personally recommend Drpobox, Google Drive, SkyDrive and SugarSync for personal usage like backing up photos, files, videos etc.
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