Cloud storage is what we use, sometimes without even realizing it. If you’re using Google email, you might be surprised that when you upload a large attachment, it ends up in Google Drive instead of being added to the email.
Suddenly, you may find that, quite unconsciously, you have become the owner of something extra. With Dropbox it’s a slightly different story, here you don’t get anything in the box and you have to want to use the service yourself. There is no denying that both products are competing for our attention and ultimately our wallets.
Cloud storage – Google Drive or Dropbox
Cloud data refers to files that are not on the computer, but somewhere far away, on the server of the company that provided this service. From the user’s point of view, access to this data is usually pretty much the same. It is enough to have access to the Internet. This solution has its advantages and disadvantages.
The most important “pros” is the ability to use your own files from anywhere in the world, the most dangerous “cons” is the lack of confidence that someone else does not view, for example, your company’s financial statements.
When convenience beats uncertainty
If you do decide to use cloud drive, what options do you have? This article will present the two most important ones. These are Google Drive and Dropbox. Both companies offer desktop and mobile apps. Both programs are available through a browser and are very easy to use.
It is important to note that both sites offer two-step verification, which is recommended to be enabled. You can also sign in to both sites with your Google account. So are there any differences?
Let’s start with free cloud storage. In the case of Google Drive, it’s 15 GB, Dropbox initially only provides 2 GB, but gives you many options to increase this space up to 16 GB. How to get it? Each new friend you invite to Dropbox and create an account there adds 500 MB to your storage.
While it seems tempting, it’s not easy to find friends who don’t have an account yet. Another difference concerns paid tariff plans. Google has a much richer offering of 6 options available, while Dropbox only has 2 plans. At Google you can have a maximum disk size of 30 TB, competitors have it as low as 1 TB.
In this case, Dropbox outperforms Google only when it comes to Linux support. Google Drive doesn’t have official support for the Penguin-based system, which is likely to upset its fans. In addition, in both cases, synchronization occurs instantly on all devices.
The whole idea of cloud drive comes down to being able to share your files with different people on different devices. In both cases, you can easily share them by sending a direct link or by sending an email invitation. You can also easily define a group of recipients and assign different rights to them. For example, so that they can only read, but not edit.
There is an option to set an expiration time for the link, after which it will stop working. Unfortunately, you will have to pay money for this feature. In Google Drive, you can only manually revoke data permissions, but it’s worth remembering that you need to do this yourself.
Support for other services
For Gmail owners, Google Drive is the perfect solution. Easily save attachments, Google Docs (documents), Sheets (spreadsheets), Slides (presentations). Plus over 100 compatible collaboration apps.
Dropbox, on the other hand, works with Microsoft Office, the business version also has support for Adobe and tools for working with PDF files, and the Slack platform used for internal communication. If you remember that Google apps do a great job with MS Office formats, there can only be one winner in this category.
The two-step verification was mentioned above. As far as protecting the data itself, Google is better at encrypting the files you download than those already on your drive. Dropbox does everything exactly the opposite. The files on the server are more secure than the files in the download.
So, Google Drive is the best solution for most users. Lots of supporting apps, a wide range of pricing plans, and top-notch security. In addition, 15 GB of free space at the beginning of work encourages you to take your first steps in the cloud.
On the other hand, Dropbox is a tool aimed at more professional users. This is especially evident in Linux support, collaboration with Microsoft, and file sharing link management.
Therefore, if you are not the head of a large company, we recommend Google Drive.
Are there alternatives
Of course, yes, and not only from unknown companies, but also from Microsoft and Apple.
OneDrive is a service integrated into File Explorer in Windows 10. There is no need to download an additional app, making it a very smart choice for most users. Interestingly, the application is available on computers running MacOS, as well as mobile devices with iOS and Android. Up to 5 GB the service is provided free of charge.
iCloud – This option is mainly suitable for those who use Apple technology. It is used to backup and share native files on mobile devices. However, you can also manage them from a computer running Windows or MacOS. Up to 5 GB is free.
Mega is the only service not associated with any of the market giants. The New Zealand-based company provides software that outperforms both One Drive and iCloud. Mega offers a very handy mobile application that syncs with programs on personal computers. The company prides itself on encrypting data before it even reaches the cloud. Moreover, the program code is open, and everyone can make sure that there are no hidden vulnerabilities or spyware. Up to 50 GB the service is provided free of charge. The more expensive the tariff plan, the higher the download speed.