June 14, 2024

Top 10 Cloud Storage Services

cloud storage service

Here, we covered the top 10 cloud storage services you can use both as an individual or business.

What is a cloud storage service?

Cloud storage is a cloud computing model that stores data on the Internet through a cloud computing provider that manages and operates data storage as a service. It eliminates the need to purchase and manage your own data storage infrastructure because it is offered on-demand with just-in-time capacity and pricing. You get flexibility, durability, and “anytime, anywhere” data access as a result. Data can be accessed using cloud storage from any location, and the price is often based on a flat rate for “x” quantity of data storage.

Forms of cloud storage

There are three forms of clouds: private, public, and hybrid.

  • Public cloud storage is used when a customer connects to a storage that is maintained by a cloud provider and used by other businesses through the internet.
  • Private cloud storage is created by the customer and is accessed through a secure connection; it is not accessible by other businesses.
  • Hybrid cloud storage is when a customer utilizes a private cloud to store sensitive data and a public cloud to store less sensitive data.

How does cloud storage work?

A third-party cloud provider sells cloud storage, which is owned and operated by them and delivered over the Internet using a pay-as-you-go business model. The volume, security, and durability of your data are managed by these cloud storage providers so that it is available to your apps everywhere.

Applications can directly use an API to access cloud storage or use conventional storage protocols. In order to collect, manage, secure, and analyze data at scale, many companies offer complimentary services.

Benefits of using cloud storage

  • Total Ownership Cost. With cloud storage, there is no need to invest money in hardware, storage, or “someday” scenarios. You may instantly alter performance and retention parameters, add or remove capacity as needed, and only pay for storage that you actually use. Even more, efficiencies can be achieved by automatically moving less-used data to lower cost levels in compliance with auditable standards.
  • It’s time to deploy. Infrastructure shouldn’t ever hold back development teams from acting when they are ready to. IT can swiftly offer the precise quantity of storage required, exactly when it’s needed, thanks to cloud storage. Instead of having to maintain storage systems, this enables IT to concentrate on resolving complicated application-related issues.
  • Management of information. A huge leverage point for new use cases is created by centralizing storage on the cloud. You may carry out effective information management tasks, such as automated data tiering or locking down data in support of compliance needs, by employing cloud storage lifecycle management policies.

What to look out for when choosing a cloud storage service

  • Durability: Data should be stored redundantly on several devices in multiple facilities, ideally. Data loss shouldn’t be the result of unforeseen events, mistakes made by people, or equipment failures.
  • Availability: All data should be accessible when needed, but production data and archives are different. The best cloud storage will provide the perfect ratio of costs and retrieval times.
  • Security: Ideally, all data is encrypted both in transit and at rest. Access controls and permissions should function equally well in the cloud and on-site storage, respectively.

With all the basic information well explained, let’s now look at the top 10 cloud storage services.

This list will be going from the least to the top.

10. MEGA

Choose MEGA, a provider at the other end of the privacy spectrum, if you’re concerned about privacy with other free cloud storage providers like Google (our number seven recommendation). Although the eccentric creator of MEGA, Kim Dotcom, had run-ins with the law, he is no longer employed by the business. Since security is MEGA’s first concern, zero-knowledge encryption is the gold standard and only you have access to your files.

Why is it on this list?

MEGA is a wonderful choice for users looking for a free cloud storage service. It enhanced the amount of free file storage from 15GB to 20GB in 2021. Additionally, by performing specific tasks, such as installing desktop and mobile apps, you can extend your free space. However, this additional capacity expires after a year.

Cons

There is substantial debate regarding how much of MEGA’s stock is held by individuals who are under the control of the Chinese government, which may worry some users.

9.  Apple iCloud

On any iGadget, iCloud provides excellent usability and seamless integration.

Possession of an Apple product entitles you access to 5GB of free iCloud storage. The fact that nothing you purchase from the iTunes Store counts towards your storage allowance is a benefit.

All of the data from your Apple devices may be automatically backed up to its servers via iCloud. However, 5GBs won’t suffice for significant backups. You must instead upgrade to one of the three iCloud+ plans, which cost $1 per month for 50GB, $3 per month for 200GB, or $10 per month for 2TB.

Why is it on this list?

  • It’s easy compatibility with apple devices
  • Additionally, iWork, Apple’s basic productivity suite that works just fine for things like schoolwork, is connected to iCloud.

Pros

  • Get 5GB for free with any Apple device.
  • Compatible with iWorks
  • Well-designed interface

Cons

  • High prices for sales of more storage space

8. pCloud

For starters, pCloud provides 4GB of free storage. Aside from installing desktop and mobile apps, uploading videos and photographs from your smartphone to pCloud, and persuading people to subscribe to pCloud, you may also add more storage at a rate of 1GB per time. The maximum amount of free storage is 10GB.

However, if you’re serious about your storage, you can currently purchase 500GB of storage for life for $175. Also, $350 for 2TB. That’s a great offer.

The first 1TB of the business subscription costs $96 per user per year. Or, for $175 for Premium and $350 for Premium Plus, you can purchase a plan for the duration of the business. 1TB of storage per user is available through pCloud for Business for as little as $287.64 per year. Additional users each receive a TB of storage.

Why is it on this list?

Client-side-only file encryption is included with pCloud. You may use 256-bit AES to encrypt your files with pCloud Crypto, making them unreadable to anybody else. Oh, they really do mean “no one” when they say that. Your data is lost if your password is lost.

Pros

  • A lifetime contract is possible
  • Unbreached security

Cons

  • It is pretty expensive

7. Next Cloud

Using your current servers and hard drives, Nextcloud is an open-source tool that lets you create your own cloud storage business. Those who value security and privacy should use this DIY cloud.

On a work server or off your own external servers, Nextcloud can be used to set up cloud storage. How much storage capacity does it offer? What amount do you desire?

Even Nextcloud is changing. It began as an independent Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) cloud for file storage. As more services are added, it will resemble the all-in-one office suites provided by Google and Microsoft more and more. Additionally, Nextcloud 21 is a lot quicker than earlier iterations.

Both a free and a business edition of Nextcloud are available. You set it up yourself using your own machines with the free version. You are given access to as much storage as your computers will allow. The corporate version if you don’t want to manage it yourself. For €36 per user per year, Nextcloud Enterprise offers the bare minimum of support for up to 100 users.

Why is it on this list?

  • If offers very large storage for little to no price at all

Pros

  • Free
  • Open source
  • The software provides a range of services

Cons

  • It can be very daunting to set up

6.  Google Drive

I know you were expecting this cloud storage service to be at the top of this list.

Google Drive was once merely a storage service. However, Google later copied Google Docs, a web-based office suite, into Google One. By simply having a Google account, you may now obtain 15GB of free storage and a fantastic office suite. It is currently widely used as a full-fledged cloud-based office by enterprises and Chromebook users because it is good enough. The majority of operating systems, with the rare exception of Linux, are supported by Google Drive clients.

However, Insync, a third-party commercial Linux client, is outstanding. Individual lifetime subscriptions to this program are $29.99, while team subscriptions are $49.99.

More space is required. No issue. Prices for 100GB of Google Drive storage under the name Google One start at $2 per month or $20 per year. You may also purchase 200GB for $3 per month or $30 per year. The top end of the spectrum costs $10 per month or $100 annually for 2TB, and $100 per month for 10TB. For $300 per month, you can have up to 30TB. Plans can be shared with up to 5 people.

Why is it on this list?

One of the features of Google Drive is how it works with Google search. It is therefore simple to locate a file, for instance, if you’ve lost sight of it but recall a few words in it. This function is virtually always used by me. As I tend to refer to my old write-up formats for references.

Pros

  • Superior storage
  • Fantastic supplemental services
  • Decent prices
  • Consists of a free plan

Cons

  • The web interface can be somewhat challenging.
  • A lack of end-to-end encryption

5. Dropbox

Currently, Dropbox is considered one of the top 10 cloud storage services. Even though Dropbox Basic only offers 2GB of free storage, you may use it on any platform. Your files are accessible through the Dropbox website, desktop programs for Mac, Windows, and Linux, native file systems, and mobile apps for iOS, Android, and Kindle Fire. Even Blackberry phones are still supported, in all honesty. It’s simple to set up, and you won’t have to spend any time worrying about file syncing.

If you require extra storage, Dropbox’s personal plans increase to 3TB for $20 per month. Dropbox Business options for Teams with 5TB of storage start at $15 per month. This implies that you’ll have to pay at least $45 per month for this level of service starting with a minimum of three users. With a minimum of three users, the Advanced plan offers limitless storage for $25 per user each month. That works out to a starting monthly payment of $75. These latter options offer a free trial period of 30 days.

Why is it on this list?

Dropbox continues to stand out for its uncomplicated design and the fact that you can use it on practically every platform you can think of. Dropbox ought to be your top option if you value simplicity, speed, and ease.

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Practically usable across all platforms

Cons

  • This service is on the high-priced side

4. Box

Box has clients for Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android, like the majority of cloud storage providers. Blackberry is supported as well. But it doesn’t work with Linux. Linux users can utilize ExpanDrive, a third-party software, to interact with Box.

The Box Starter Plan, which costs $10 per month, gives you 100GB of space and allows you to upload files up to 2GB in size. Box is a good cloud storage solution, but as a groupware or workflow tool, it really shines. When used in this fashion, it gives you the ability to share files with coworkers, assign tasks, comment on someone else’s work, and receive alerts when a file changes. It is linked with Microsoft Office 365 and Google Workspace.

Starting at $5 per month for up to three users and 100GB of storage, the Box Business Plan basic subscription is designed for small and medium-sized enterprises. The following level of business plans is $15 per month for three users and unlimited storage, yes, unlimited.

Why is it on this list?

Its integration with Microsoft Office and google workspace makes it a very useful service as most users tend to work with Microsoft packages and google docs for their entry of data or write-ups.

Pros

  • Supports a variety of platforms
  • Excellent combination of office and storage services
  • Inexpensive paid plan

Cons

  • The desktop version can be confusing

3. OneDrive

Windows already includes OneDrive, and the two work well together. OneDrive is just another directory in File Explorer from the perspective of a Windows user; talk about simple. Anyone can use it on the web, with a desktop app for Mac and earlier versions of Windows, and with OneDrive apps for Android, iOS, Windows Phone, and Xbox. Yes, the Xbox.

OneDrive offers 5GB of storage without charge. Starting with the $6 per month subscription, Microsoft 365 members receive an additional terabyte per user. The maximum for this package is six users or 6TB of storage. With an annual subscription, customers of Microsoft 365 Business Standard pay $12.50 per user per month to use the complete online versions of Outlook, Excel, Word, and PowerPoint. For $1.99 a month, you can add 200GB if all you need is more storage.

Why is it on this list?

Along with seamlessly integrating with Windows, Microsoft OneDrive’s primary selling point is how well it works with Microsoft Office applications. You can work together in real-time on spreadsheets and documents with your partners using Microsoft 365.

Pros

  • For Windows users, perfect
  • Excellent results with Microsoft 365
  • outstanding for file sharing

Cons

  • It doesn’t support Linux OS
  • It can be very expensive

2.  Amazon Cloud Drive

One popular and excellent cloud storage service is Amazon S3 from Amazon Web Services (AWS). But people don’t actually utilize that. Amazon Cloud Drive is not a top-notch storage option, yet they use it for personal and small commercial purposes.

However, Amazon Cloud Drive has improved since its inception. Now offering sync services for Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android is Amazon Cloud Drive. Unfortunately, it still lacks a Linux client. However, the web interface is still a little bit awkward for some people.

Amazon Cloud Drive offers 5GB of “free” file storage to Prime subscribers. Amazon currently offers annual storage plans that start at 100GB for $19.99 and 1TB for $59.99 if you want more. If you subscribe on a monthly basis, you can acquire 100GB of storage for $2, 1TB for $7, and 2TB for $12. Brace yourself; other Amazon cloud subscriptions will get you up to 30TB for $1,799.70.

Why is it on this list?

Amazon uses block-level file copying to move files (aka “differential sync” or “delta sync”). When you sync a file using this mechanism, which Dropbox also does, you just send and receive the differences (the delta) between files. As a result, these services sync files significantly more quickly than their competitors.

Pros

  • 5GB for free with Amazon Prime
  • With Amazon Prime, you get unlimited photo storage.
  • Rapid backups are made possible through delta synchronization

Cons

  • The interface is lagging behind
  • It is very pricy

1.  iDrive

Anyone who wants cloud storage and backup combined in one place should use iDrive. Its primary function is backing up small enterprises, but it also functions well as a file-sharing and personal cloud storage service.

iDrive doesn’t limit you to a particular machine, unlike many other cloud backup services. One account can be used to back up your network drives, Android and macOS desktop computers, iPhones, iPads, and smartphones. A Linux backup option is also available, although it’s only for Linux servers. Desktop Linux storage clients don’t exist. Oh, dear! To manually upload files, you can use its web interface.

Typically, iDrive starts its promotions with 5GB of free storage. That’s OK, but if you want to get the most out of it for backup, check out what Personal iDrive has to offer. These start at $59.62 for 5TB over the course of a year or an even better deal at $74.62 for 10TB per user over the course of a year. Additionally, there are enterprise subscriptions with limitless users, but the cost increases with the amount of storage. As an illustration, the business will charge you $74.62 for 5TB of storage that may be used by 5 individuals.

iDrive is a wonderful option if you’re searching for a backup solution for your home or small business. It is reasonably priced and simple to use.

Why is it on this list?

A fantastic offer is available from iDrive. You won’t get more storage for less money anywhere else now. 10 Terabytes (TB) — terabytes, not a mistake — are available for $3.98 per year. Even its standard cost of $74.62 for 10TB for the initial year is commendable.

Pros

  • Great value
  • Effective for storing and backups
  • Excellent combination of office and storage services

Cons

  • No support for native Linux
  • There is no two-factor authentication
  • Relatively sluggish download rates

Conclusion

There are a lot of cloud storage services out there. Before picking any cloud storage service to use, it will be advisable to pick the one that favours your work rate and also your work style and also your pocket size.

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