We can’t stress enough the importance of backups. You may store your information on external hard drives, but there can be risks associated with doing so. Though rare, external drives can fail, just like magnetic drives installed in most computers. It is also possible for these drives to get lost or stolen, resulting in your data being lost. Another option is to store your information in the cloud.
There are a lot of factors that an individual should consider before jumping into the cloud environment. Are you tied into an ecosystem already (Google, Apple, Microsoft), what features are you looking for, how much do you want to spend are just a few. Here is a list of some of the best cloud services currently available.
Carbonite is one of the best solutions for unlimited storage space. This is perfect for anyone who may have a large collection of movies, a load of high load resolution pictures, or any other media. Carbonite will automatically upload any file you want that is under 4GB (anything bigger will need to be manually uploaded). Carbonite also allows automatic backups keeping any recent files or photos safe.
It can be put on Windows, MacOS, Android, and iOS devices. They offer multiple storage plans that can accommodate any budget. Carbonites basic storage plan costs about $72 a year and will do a full backup of one computer.
If you have an Android phone or tablet or are currently using the various applications in the Google ecosystem; Google Drive will be perfect for you. It incorporates Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides. Google gives individuals 15GB of free storage. Paid subscriptions start at $2 per month for 100GB, $10 per month for 1TB and $100 per month for 10TB of storage space. It is also compatible with the Android and iOS operating systems.
Google Drive has very strong sharing capabilities. It makes collaborating projects among multiple users a breeze. Users can edit Docs, Sheets, or Slides by themselves or simultaneously. With integration among other Google apps, files can be shared quickly with no password required.
DropBox is a fully featured service that is easy to use. It has a great referral system that can net users up to 16GB of free storage. Subscriptions start at $9.99 per month for 1TB (1,000GB) of space and other features. They also offer professional plans as well for more money.
The service also has a number of sharing abilities. If you invite someone to share a folder, it will appear on their desktop. You can also create links for easy sharing of pictures or documents.
If you are a Apple user, the iCloud is a great option. It comes with 5GB of free storage; but also has upgrade packages. 50GB of storage will run $1.00 per month, 200GB for $3.00 per month, 2TB (2,000GB) for $10.00 per month. Any songs, videos, or movies downloaded from iTunes will not be included in your storage limit. However, it is important to mention that automatic iCloud backups can devour your limits quickly.
iCloud can also be a media sharing center that works closely with iWork, Apples productivity collection. It has a word processor as well as other apps that can be shared among other iCloud users.
OneDrive is Microsoft’s in-house cloud service. It will allow you to share anything where ever you are and allow you to stop sharing with the ease of clicking your mouse. OneDrive comes with 5GB of free storage. A user can get 50GB for $2.00 per month; $7.00 per month will increase you to 1TB (1,000GB) of storage. If you have Office365, you automatically receive 1TB of storage as part of your subscription.
OneDrive allows individuals to post pictures straight to Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and many other social media platforms. It also has a remote feature which allows you to access any computer associated with your account that has the OneDrive client on it, even if the files aren’t already uploaded to the cloud. OneDrive also allows collaboration like Google Drive, and maintains the 25 most recent versions of a file, making revisions/reversions easy.
Box is a service that offers an inexpensive alternative to individuals who are concerned about giving increasing information in control of Google, Apple, Microsoft. The service offers 10GB of free storage and have plans that start at $5 per month for 100GB of storage. It allows users to send share files and folders with a link.
If you are near one of our shops, we also provide a cloud service. It is part of our Platinum and VIP protection plans. These plans include anti-virus, cloud back us of the entire machine, in store discounts, free annual tuneup, and other great benefits. These plans start at $29.95 per month. If you have any questions about the services we offer feel free to give one of our locations a call!
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