Dropbox is one of the simplest free cloud storage applications that you can find, and its paid features are very useful for businesses and for those that want more out of their online storage. The main application utilizes a simple drag and drop interface, and you can thus send large files and share files across different computers and devices in a very convenient way.
Dropbox provides cloud storage in two different ways, namely free and under a monthly subscription. At its core, Dropbox merely synchronizes files across different devices, with the most recent changes overwriting the previous version. This allows collaboration of work on the same files across different machines.
Dropbox also allows for online access as well as over 100,000 devices such as iPads and mobile phones, although creating an offline version for access without an Internet connection may be manually set. Additional features for both versions include sharing of files via links, automatic uploads of pictures for mobile devices, and many more.
For paid services, the main different is the amount of personal storage space provided. For the free version of Dropbox, users are provided with 2GB of free online storage, with an increase in storage space awarded by performing tasks such as referrals, linking accounts to your Dropbox, among others. For paid storage, on the other hand, the company provides 1TB to unlimited capacity for all of your files.
Paid services also include additional management tools like unlimited backup history, or up to 30 days for Dropbox Pro users, additional tools and setups for shared and collaboration folders, restrictions controls, and many more. There is no big difference between the Business and Enterprise package of Dropbox, however, so you’re better off with the former if you’re pretty much already familiar with how the system works.
Ease of Use
Dropbox is one of the easiest online storage applications that you can find. In the desktop version, Dropbox installs a dedicated folder which serves as your personals storage space. This takes up both your cloud storage and hard disk space. Files placed into this folder will automatically be uploaded online and across your other devices with Dropbox installed, and files will be deleted when you delete them locally.
For changes to existing files, only changes will be done during syncing, which is must faster as compared to uploading the entire file. However, upload speeds are slower as compared to other online storage, but it is one of the fastest when it comes to downloads. Prompts for completed uploads, downloads, updates, and deletions are also available in desktop versions.
For online versions of Dropbox, users can access their encrypted cloud storage simply by logging into their account. Here, they can view and download files as well as upload new files. There is also a section wherein uploaded photos are separate from other files for ease of access.
Users can send large files to non-Dropbox users by sharing a link and sending it to them, while they can also share files either to or from others through folders that may be created for that very purpose.
Of course, those who simply want to have their own personal storage space can avail of the free version of Dropbox, or what is referred to as Dropbox Basic. They can easily upgrade the capacity of their free cloud storage by performing easy tasks such as connecting to your email or social media accounts, and referring others to install Dropbox. This can quickly increase your limit of free online storage from 2GB to up to 10GB or more.
For paid services, there are three options to choose from, namely Dropbox Pro, Business, and Enterprise. Dropbox Pro goes for 8.25 USD a month, and this pretty much only provides the same functionality as Dropbox Basic with the difference of it providing you automatically with 1TB of encrypted cloud storage.
For Dropbox Business, charges are at 12.50 USD per user per month. This is great for those that collaborate on the same files but are physically separate from each other. Dropbox Business provides lots of features that allows users to better manage and control documents being accessed as well as teams that can access them.
The price for Dropbox Enterprise is not advertised on the site, but basically, it has all the features of Dropbox Business with the added advantage of advanced training and support from the Dropbox team.
Cloud security in Dropbox is pretty basic. Dropbox applications encrypt files during uploads and downloads as well as when it is stored on their servers. Login access also requires a two-step verification for added security. This provides users with basic but still reliable security against hackers as well as those with unauthorized access to your password.
Sadly, Dropbox prioritizes phone at chat support for Dropbox Business and Enterprise subscribers. Others may have to settle with email support, where in customer support would reply within a couple of days, at best. This is mildly disappointing especially considering how big of a company they are.
Still, with the usual inconvenience-free experience that most users have had with the product. Hopefully, you would not be needing any additional support from them any time soon.
Definitely, Dropbox is one of the best cloud storage applications that you can find in the market today, especially if you want something versatile enough to be accessed across multiple devices with ease. It is so simple that literally anyone can use it with no problems as all functions are pretty much either self-explanatory or discussed in detail.
If you want to try the application out, go from Dropbox Basic first. Upgrade eventually if you see that it fits your needs, especially when team collaboration is a must. Don’t expect a lot when it comes to customer support, though, as this is the part where Dropbox fails most of the time based on most customer reviews. Other than that, you will find that Dropbox as a cloud online storage service is one of the most convenient that you can find right now.
The cloud storage is a special service, often provided by hosting companies, that gives you the opportunity to maintain, manage and store your data on a unique online storage.
The price of the services is calculated per monthly consumption, but many storage providers have additional operating expenses. The only threat can come from hackers, but most providers have invested into state-of-art encryption and authentication.
If you are going to buy yourself a cloud storage, you must know that there are three models public, hybrid and private.
Public cloud storage keeps your data in global servers spread across multiple continents. Users pay according to their monthly usage. At the moment, this sector is dominated by Amazon’s, Google and Microsoft’s cloud storage services.
Private Cloud offers you a dedicated server with high-quality protection. These servers are perfect if you require extra customizations, reliability, and flexibility.
Hybrid Cloud, as the name suggests, this is a combination between the private and public cloud. There are many features offered by the hybrid service, which is perfect for businesses. Although, there are many cons with this model, its popularity has grown a lot throughout the years. Unfortunately, there are many management and technical challenges, even though that there are enormous benefits as well.
Private workloads must access the public cloud storage provider, which means that you must always have a strong network connectivity if you don’t wish to experience any glitches. Of course, you can enjoy the benefits of the enterprise-level cloud, which is highly customizable according to the needs of the client.
How the cloud storage works?
When your data is uploaded to the cloud storage, a particular ID Number is assigned. Upon retrieval, the user sends the number to the system, and the content is sent towards the client.
Also, all cloud companies offer state-of-art security protocols, which back up the information precisely, and the security is doubled. As a capital cost-cutting measure many clients choose to use the cloud storage service for DevOps.
The current market leaders are the leading corporations Amazon, Google and Microsoft who dominate in the segment of enterprise packages. While the section for small business owners is dominated by Hewlett-Packard, IBM, and EMC.
Advantages of Cloud Storage:
- Synchronization – All cloud services are created in such manner, that the user is enabled to drag-drop his files for easier usage.
- Bandwidth – You can use the cloud storage to upload your files and send a download links to your recipient. This way you will avoid the heavy attachments.
- Accessibility – Fast and easy access to all your files anywhere in the world via internet.
- Accident Recovery – You will have a easy-to-access back-up plan.
Disadvantages of Cloud Storage:
1.Usability: When using the drag-drop feature the original file will disappear from your original device. Copy/Paste to retain it on it’s original location.
2.Bandwidth: Each company that provides cloud services has a bandwidth allowance
3.Data Security: There are certain concerns whether the cloud storage service is as secure as they state.