Cloud Storage

Since technology is upgrading, we are slowly starting to use internet services to store our information and data. In 2014, there is no need for us to purchase hardware to store our files. Over the years we have used a variety of different storage devices which ranges from floppy disks, CDs/DVDs, USBs and external HDDs. But over time, something better comes out and is more convenient. As of now, I believe that cloud storage is where we are at now.

Many people use cloud storage instead of the external storage devices. They are often cheaper and can be accessed on a computer with an internet connection. There are currently a large amount of cloud storage file sharing programs available, below are a few which are great and should be given a try. Cloud storage allows multiple users to access files from different locations, it is more convenient and is incredibly easy to use. These cloud storage devices can be accessed through a program or through the service providers website. The storage device also syncs/updates frequently, it occurs whenever a file has been updated, edited or removed from the cloud storage. The positive thing about these cloud devices is that you can access your files on different devices such as tablets and phones and they are often free to use.

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Google Drive:

Google Drive offers an introductory 15GB of space for your Gmail, Google+ Photos and personal files. If you feel that the 15GB is not enough then you can upgrade to 100GB+ for approximately $1.99 USD a month.

If you have a business in which you want to store your information on, you can get plans larger than the 100GB plan. These plans are overall quite cheap and very useful.

Below are the Google Drive storage plans:

Storage
100 GB
1 TB
10 TB
20 TB
30 TB
Monthly Rate
$1.99
$9.99
$99.99
$199.99
$299.99

On top of this, Google offers more storage for certain devices. The following devices are able to get additional storage on the Google Drive:

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Dropbox:

Right now, I am using the Dropbox as my primary storage device. This was my first ever cloud storage program I have ever used, the reason for this was that there was a promotion where I could gain additional storage by signing up with my university email account. The reason I use Dropbox is because I send links of files in my drop box to other people who do not have access to my dropbox, the only thing I have to do is set that file to public.

Compared to Google Drive, Dropbox offers less storage space. Dropbox offers a 2GB+ of storage space compared to Google Drive’s 15GB. Dropbox however offers unlimited storage for $15 USD a month with a minimum of 5 users, which results to $75 USD a month for unlimited storage space. Below is an image of their current plans and the services they offer.

2014-05-07 12-09-39_Dropbox - Pricing - Dropbox for Business

Dropbox can also be accessed from computers, laptops and other devices such as:

  • Android
  • iPhone
  • iPad
  • BlackBerry
  • Kindle Fire

Dropbox also allows you to gain more space in your cloud through referrals. You can get up to 500MB per person you refer, however the max you can get from this is 16GB in total.

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OneDrive/SkyDrive:

Another cloud storage alternative is OneDrive/SkyDrive, this storage service is provided by Microsoft. Unlike the other cloud storage services, this one is available on Android, Apple, Windows and Xbox devices.

With this storage service you can save all your Microsoft Office Suite files to your OneDrive cloud, you can then send these files through an email or link. You can then edit the permissions of the link, the file may be read only or edit. You can change the permissions whenever you like, so they are not permanently public.

One benefit with OneDrive is that it offers 7GB initially but you can upgrade the amount of space you can use.

Similar to the other cloud services, there are student promotions which give students an addition 3GB which results in 10GB altogether.

If you are thinking of updgrading you storage service, below are the cost for their service. It must be noted that if you do upgrade you will still get your introductory 7GB + the storage plan you purchased (27GB, 57GB, 107GB, 207GB).

Storage
Office 365 + 20GB
50GB
100GB
200GB
Monthly Rate
$12 AUD
$5.99 AUD
$8.99 AUD
#13.99 AUD

The Office 365 allows five members to use Microsoft’s Suite which include programs such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint and 4 more. With this plan you get services such as 60 Skype minutes per month which allows you to call landlines and mobiles in 60 + countries as well as tech support.

But if you do consider buying the yearly rates, you save a larger amount of money. Their services would then cost:

Storage
Office 365 + 20GB
50GB
100GB
200GB
Yearly Rate
$119 AUD
$25 AUD
$50 AUD
$100 AUD

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MediaFire

Out of all the current storage services listed, MediaFire has one of the best paid services out of the three. Their free service is currently the second best out of all the services listed. They give their users a 10GB storage space which can be accessed from the web, on Windows and Mac desktops as well as Apple (Compatible with devices running iOS 7 and up) and Android phones (Compatible with devices running Android 2.2 and up). Their services are also available on the Apple and Android tablets, they just need to be either running iOS7 and up or Android 2.2 and up.

Their services are at 50% off for your initial purchase, this applies yearly. So you can get two years worth of hosting for the price of one. Their plans are shown below:

2014-05-08 13-06-16_Free File Sharing and Storage made Simple

Compared to the other services, they provide 1 TB of space for approximately $2.50 USD a month.

Summary:

There are currently a large amount of storage services available for you however I could not go through them all. A few more cloud storage services you could check out include:

Out of these, Tencent is probably the best one. Tencent provides 10 TB of free storage but one downside of this is that there is only a Chinese version available. The cloud service aims to create an English version sometime this year for their international users. You might as well just ignore everything and get Tencent.

I do not know how to read Chinese but I am willing to learn the basics for 10TB of free storage, there’s no way I will utilise it correctly but who would turn down 10TB of free storage.

Thanks for reading!