In this post, we look at the best cloud storage for mobile. Sure, cloud storage is great for backup across devices, but if the service you’re using skimps on features such as security or customer service, you may as well just hand your smartphone to the next thief who wants your data. Cloud storage works by users uploading files to a distributed network of servers. Instead of manually syncing files among upgraded cell phones, desktop devices and other computers, you can log into the cloud service from any of these devices to get access to the files.
More than 500 million people are using cloud storage for personal use, according to Elephant Drive. While some cloud storage providers are stellar in their desktop versions, their mobile services can be unreliable and inconsistent. If you access your data from your mobile device often, here are four cloud storage services to consider based on security, user experience, storage space and collaboration features.
Cloud storage image by AmusedCloud via Flickr.
Dropbox is one of the most popular services, a pioneer in the cloud storage game. Dropbox features an easy-to-use interface, apps available for every device, and gives you 2 GB of free space to get your started. The service also makes it easy to share your files with others. You create shared folders or a special link in order to send files to friends and co-workers. If you refer enough people, you can get up to 18 GB of space on the free plan, or go with a pro plan that starts at $10 a month for 100 GB.
2. Google Drive
Google has a dizzying amount of free services, many of which are hosted in the cloud, such as the immensely popular Gmail. Google Drive is the cloud storage offering that packs a big punch, as is typical for Google. You get 15 GB of storage for free, built-in software-as-a-service apps, such as Google Docs, and an increasing focus on security within the technology. Google’s search technology works to make it easy to find the exact files you need. You can view many common types of files within the browser through Google Docs, and Drive includes features such as chatting, commenting and revision history. You can upgrade to 100 GB of storage for $5 a month, or 200 gigs for $10 per month. Note that Google Drive storage is also shared with Gmail and Google Photos.
SugarSync is part cloud storage service, and part traditional syncing application. It is straightforward to set up, with apps available for every major mobile platform. You can access your cloud files, edit documents, send files to other devices that are synced and perform backups on your data. SugarSync does not offer a free account tier, although you can try out the service for 30 days. Personal plans start at $7.49 a month for 60 GB, up to $25 a month for 250 GB.
Box is a robust cloud storage service that gives you 5 free gigs. It also features folder organization, two ways to share data with other users, online collaboration and mobile file uploads. If you need more storage space, it costs $10 a month for 25 GB, and $20 a month for 50 GB. More than 150,000 businesses use Box, including P&G, the Giants baseball team and AARP, according to their website.
What cloud storage service would you recommend for mobile users? Share in the comments.