The six best personal cloud storage choices for your stuff
Summary: Dropbox just added more free storage for his or her customers, so are they the proper personal cloud storage? Or is its Google’s mish-mash of cloud services? Apple’s iCloud? Maybe even Microsoft’s SkyDrive? Or, another service entirely? Let us take a look at today’s greatest choices.
Recently, Dropbox the favored cloud-storage company doubled the volume of free space you obtain for inviting friends to Dropbox . How much is that? For each friend you’d invite who installed Dropbox, you’d both get 500 more MBs of free space . With a free account, you may invite as much as 32 people for a grand total of 16 GB of additional space. Pro, read paid, accounts now earn 1 GB per referral, for a complete of 32 GB of additional space. Better still, you get this space retroactively if you’d already gotten people to provide Dropbox a try.
That’s great, but does it make Dropbox the fitting of the non-public cloud storage services? Maybe. Everyone, and that i mean everyone, is offering some form of infrastructure as a service (IaaS) cloud services lately. In IaaS that you just find file storage, ala Dropbox, but other companies like Apple, Google and Microsoft also are offering storage, media serving, and other IaaS ad hoc services for either free or minimal prices.
These services are transforming rapidly. Prices, amounts of free storage, and extra services beyond pure storage are constantly being changed. Here’s what’s what with them though within the spring of 2012.
Amazon Cloud Drive/Playe : While you think Amazon and clouds you possibly take into consideration Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) , the most important public cloud service. But, Amazon’s services aren’t only for businesses. Cloud Drive provides 20GBs of free storage and you’ll also use that storage to stream music to as much as eight devices. If you are going to buy your music from Amazon you too can store your music there without using any of your free storage. Unfortunately, to upload files you need to use a slightly klutzy Flash interface.
If you wish more storage, and in case you intend on using Amazon to store your music collection you are going to, Google offers several tiers of storage, starting from 20 to at least one,000 gigabytes at a cost of $1.00 per gigabyte. So, for example, 20GBs will run you $20 per year 0 .
0 Apple iCloud 1 : iCloud comes with 5GBs of free storage. MobileMe customers receive 20GB of extra iCloud space for storing without cost, in the event that they pick it up by June 30, 2012. Like Amazon’s Cloud Drive, it’s actually greater than just storage. Any music, apps, books, and television shows you buy from the iTunes store, in addition to your Photo Stream, don’t count against your storage quota.
Apple’s iCloud will provide you with not only storage and a web music server, it’s also all of Apple’s wireless services. These include contact synchronization, its own e-mail service, mobile backup, and site awareness.
ICloud also works hand in glove with 1 iTunes Match 2 . Match, that is built into the iTunes app helps you to store all the music collection, irrespective of its source in iCloud for just $24.99 a year. Music that’s already in iTunes, even supposing you didn’t buy it from Apple, doesn’t count against your storage limits.
Basic iCloud services are available in via the internet on any platform. To actually use it to its full potential you should be running a Mac with Lion or an iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch running iOS5. It also runs reasonably well with Windows with the newest version of iTunes. What about your Mac running Snow Leopard or an older version of Mac OS X? You’re out of luck.
Additional space is priced at $20 per year for 10GB, $40 per year for 20GB, and $100 per year for 50GB.
2 Dropbox 3 : Dropbox wasn’t the 1st cloud-based storage service but it surely was the person who popularized it. Unlike the alternative cloud systems, Dropbox doesn’t desire a Web-browser interface. It should run natively on almost any PC, 3 including Linux 4 or devices running Android or iOS.
What i like about Dropbox is that i’m able to use it identical to it was another network drive with my file manager. Unlike any other services, there aren’t any extras. Dropbox offers file storage with none frills. However, sometimes that’s all you want and because it enables you to easily get in your essential files whatever device you’re using i locate it extremely handy.
Dropbox only comes with 2GBs of free storage, but since it’s primary for documents and never media, that is all you wish. If you need more, 4 Dropbox charges $9.99 a month for 50GBs and $19.99 for 100GBs 5 . Regardless of the free additional storage, that makes it among the dearer services whenever you quite a few space.
5 Google Play 6 and 6 Google Docs 7 . OK, so all of us want 7 Google to provide a “G drive.” 8 Thus far, however, despite the endless rumors, they haven’t come through with it. Meanwhile, Google already offers a music and e-book storage service. Unlike any other services though Google doesn’t come up with a hard and fast amount of space for storing. Instead, you could it to store as much as 20,000 songs. 8 Google provides a counter 9 to tell you how close you’re to hitting your limit. At an estimated 5MBs a song that works out to about 20GBs of storage.
Google Music feedback is obtainable via an online browser on any PC and on Android devices with the 9 Google Music App. 0 . You may play Your Google Music tracks on any collection of PCs and as much as eight Android devices. However, you could only hearken to them on one device at a time. To upload music, you want to use Google Music Manager. It’s available on Linux, Mac, and Windows. You may as well buy music from the built-in Google Music Store
2 Microsoft SkyDrive 3 , like Google’s offerings is a kind of, style of, storage service. True, it permits you to save, share and access files but you ought to use it through a browser, IE by choice but it surely will work with others. However, there are rumors afoot that, like iCloud and Ubuntu One before it, Microsoft will integrate SkyDrive with its operating system. The word is that 3 SkyDrive may be integrated into the Windows 8 file manager 4 within the same way Dropbox already works with just about all operating system file managers.
Microsoft, however, is likewise looking to sell it, including Office Web Apps and native Microsoft Office software, as a 4 project collaboration package 5 . i locate it a touch klutzy myself. To actually use it you normally should be committed, ala iCloud, to modern Microsoft software. That said, the single thing you cannot argue about is its price: SkyDrive comes with 25GBs of free storage. That’s way over the others.
For Windows users, SkyDrive may soon be the cloud storage solution of choice. It’s just not quite there yet.
5 Ubuntu One 6 : You may think that this service will be for Ubuntu Linux users, or a minimum of Linux users, only. You would be wrong. This service, which offers 5GBs of free storage and music streaming also is 6 available on Windows 7 . Ubuntu One is usually available on both Android and iOS.
I like Ubuntu One, but I’ve found that it has trouble running on Windows 7, but not XP, now and again. I’ve yet to pin down a difficult reason behind this.
The Ubuntu One music streaming service, which currently comes with 20GBs of storage, is absolutely fee-based. It costs $3.99 a month or $39.99 a year. If you want more pure cupboard space for files and so on over the initial 5GBs, it’s $2.99 monthly or $29.99 per year per 20GBs of storage.
So that’s the simplest? i take advantage of them all, but if it involves the bread and butter work of cloud file serving, i need to say Dropbox remains to be definitely the right of the lot.
No, Dropbox doesn’t have any bells or whistle. No, it doesn’t offer probably the most storage for the smallest amount of cash. All it does is let me create, add, delete, move, copy, edit, whatever, file and directories just as though they were the other files on my system. It isn’t important if I’m using a Linux, Mac, or Windows box or most smartphones or tablets; it just works with their native interfaces. That implies i haven’t got to give thought how you can use it, i will be able to just use it. That makes it a winner in my book.
That said, with Apple, Microsoft and 7 Canonical 8 , Ubuntu’s parent company, all integrating their cloud services right into the operating system, Dropbox can be bettered by the year’s end. And, without a doubt , Google may yet change everything. Still, for now, Dropbox is the perfect pure play personal cloud file storage.