6 Top Cloud Storage Services
Back in the 1990s, those of us working in tech were well aware of cloud storage, only back then, we simply talked about servers. A server was any computer that made data accessible via an the Internet or an intranet to other computers. For example, you could have a web, email, Usenet, or file transfer protocol (ftp) server. Don’t worry about those latter two. We don’t use them so much these days.
“Cloud storage” is a more recent term that refers to storing your personal or business files on a remote server. It actually goes a little beyond that, because when you store information in “the cloud,” regardless of the service provider you choose, your data is backed up on multiple robust computers in a variety of locations to ensure that if one or even a few servers crash, your information is still safe.
Cloud storage lets you store your data remotely but access it as if it’s on your device, and it lets you access your files from any device, anywhere. Let’s say you’ve been working on an article on your desktop computer. You can then relax at your favorite cafe and work on the same file on your laptop. Better, if you have a team, you can allow others to collaborate, making notes in your article or editing it later.
Here are six cloud storage solutions we recommend.
Chromebook and Android users rely on Google for email, web searches, and more. In fact, if you get a new Android tablet or phone, you’ll need to use your Google account to set it up, and this will help transfer your email and more to the device.
When you sign up for a Google account, you’ll automatically get 15 GB of storage space with Google Drive. Use it to share documents at work, to make it easy for friends to download large files you want to share, and to more. Plus, Google Drive comes with the word process or Google Docs, the spreadsheet program Google Sheets, and other helpful personal and business tools.
For more space, prices range from $1.99 a month for 100 GB to $9.99 a month for 2 TB.
Perfect for Windows users, Microsoft OneDrive is an excellent solution for using cloud storage space as an extension of your own computer.
Anyone can get 5 GZB for free, but pay a little and you get a lot more. You can get 100 GB of OneDrive space for $1.99 a month. Get a Microsoft 365 subscription, which includes the latest Office suite, for $6.99 a month and your OneDrive gets upgrade to 1 TB of storage. For just $9.99 a month, you can get an additional 1 TB each for 2 to 6 users.
OneDrive is best for individuals and families. It’s a great way to store images, videos, and more, and to be able to access them from anywhere and on any device.
Are you looking for unlimited storage space? Then check out Sync, which has plans for 1 TB to unlimited storage. Individuals can pay $8.00 a month for 2 TB or $20 a month for 6 TB. Teams, whether family or business, can pay $5 per user per month for 1 TB of storage each, or $15 per user per month for unlimited storage space.
Get from 10 GB for free up to 2 TB for a small amount with pCloud. With this service, you can pay per month for lifetime use. As mentioned, pCloud offers anyone 10 GB of free cloud storage space. Upgrade to 500 GB for $3.99 a month, or 2 TB for $7.99 a month. If you want to pay it all up front and never worry about paying again, drop $175 for 500 GB or $350 for 2 TB.
Price-wise, Icedrive is comparable to the other cloud services on this list. Pay $1.67 a month for 150 GB, $4.17 for 1TB, or $15 for 5 TZB. The advantage with Icedrive is the built-in encryption, using the twofish algorithm. With this client-side encryption, even your folder names get encrypted. That means if a hacker accesses your account, they won’t be able to read your data. On your end, though, you’ll be able to access your information with no problem.
Perhaps the first company people think of when someone mentions cloud storage, Dropbox can integrate into your file system and make it easy to share pictures, videos, and more with friends, family, and colleagues.
Dropbox offers anyone 2 GB of free cloud storage. Compared to others on this list that offer free storage, that’s not a lot, but this is enough to share files if that’s all you use it for.
You can upgrade to 2 TB for $9.99 a month, to 3 TB for $16.58 a month, or to 5 TB each for 3 or more users for $12.50 each per month.That covers the best cloud storage. If you’re looking for physical storage for your extras, like off-season clothes, sports equipment, or business inventory, check our listings. They cover the U.S. and Canada.