Cloud Backup Service Providers
Cloud backup, also known as online backup, is a method for backing up valuable data that is transmitted over a private network or the Internet and securely stored on an off site server in a professional data centre. The off site server is usually hosted and more often owned by a third party service provider, also known as cloud provider. The cloud provider offers free storage up to a certain limit, usually 5GB and beyond that it charges the customer a fee based on capacity, bandwidth or number of users.
There are many cloud providers and the most popular ones are Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, Apple iCloud and Dropbox. Choosing the right service for your backup requirement is a bit difficult. Let’s learn about them one by one next.
OneDrive, formerly known as SkyDrive, is Microsoft’s cloud storage solution. It offers users a simple way to store, sync and share all sorts of files with other people and devices on the web. It also provides an offline virtual drive for Windows and Mac OS X. You can keep the files (including photos, videos and documents) that you want to upload in this virtual drive, and when you go online, everything is synced automatically to all your devices. You can also use the OneDrive app for Windows 10, which lets you easily work with your personal and work files when you’re on the go. You can save and share files with free online storage, open and save OneDrive files in Office apps like Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote. The auto tagging feature makes it easy to find photos on your device.
You can store any kind of file; including photos, video and documents and then access them from any of your Windows PCs or mobile devices. OneDrive organises your files by type. In addition, you can create and edit documents, add or remove files and share links to the files by emails.
Google Drive or just Drive is a cloud storage service developed by Google. It allows you to store your files securely on the cloud, open, edit or share them from any device. You can access your Google Drive files from any computer or device with a web browser. You can access your files in Google Drive from any device that includes smartphones, tablets or computers. Moreover, you can invite others to view, download and collaborate on files on your Google Drive. You don’t have to send these files as email attachments. Google Drive is also available for iOS, so if you use a Mac, you can also add, view and manage files to Google Drive and they will automatically sync with your other devices. Google Drive is built into Google’s web-based operating system called Chromium.
Apple iCloud Drive
Apple’s iCloud Drive is a cloud storage service or online backup service for the Apple ecosystem (Mac and iOS devices). It syncs and stores your files across Apple devices. There is also a Windows app for iCloud Drive, called iCloud for Windows. iCloud Drive comes with a standard 5GB of data for free, and beyond that you will be charged as per your usage. iCloud drive also serves as your iOS device’s backup solution, which means if your iCloud drive storage is full, your iOS device simply stops backing up until you free space or choose a plan that provides more backup space.
Dropboxis another popular file hosting service that can be used as your online backup. It offers a virtual drive similar to Google Drive or OneDrive. You can save files in the virtual drive on your computer, then access them on your phone from anywhere. Everything you keep in Dropbox is synced automatically to all your devices. Dropbox offers only 2GB of free online storage for storing photos, videos and music as well as for hosting static websites. However, there are a few ways to get more Dropbox storage, for free. For example, if you complete the “Get Started” tour, you will get 250 MB; if you connect your social media accounts with Dropbox, you will get additional free storage and so on.
With Dropbox, sharing large files is as fast as sharing small ones. Simply, put any file in your Dropbox, then send it to someone with a simple link. You can send a link by email, chat or a text message. When someone receive a link to a file, they can preview and download a copy. You can turn on the camera upload option to back up photos automatically from your camera roll to Dropbox, which it will organise smartly. Dropbox includes a 30-day version history, therefore, in case you accidentally delete A file or went to restore a previous version, it will come in handy.