In this new age of technology, the only thing more important than security is the data that needs to be secured. We want to keep our data as safe as possible, and cloud servers, although still a controversial alternative to hard drives, are viable options for storing it.
Apple wasted no time bringing their iCloud Drive service to market. Around the same time, another service, Dropbox, dropped onto the scene (no pun intended). These two have been the frontrunners for consumer choice since the “Cloud Storage” bubble burst, but which is better?
Lets do a cloud storage comparison of 2017 by looking more closely at the interface, security, and price.
You could literally pay me to use a cloud service, but if it isn’t easy to manage, then I’m not interested. The accessibility options within a program are just as important as its cost. iCloud seems pretty straightforward.
One thing Apple is great at is integration. Your iCloud Drive is accessible through your iCloud account, meaning you can get to it via your computer or the app on your iOS-powered device.
This also allows for easier sharing from your iCloud when sending emails or transferring data. Both the desktop version and the app are pretty simplistic, giving you a list of your data to choose from and skipping all the bells and whistles.
The menus are easy to navigate and your data is neatly organized by type – photos, documents, etc. You can also create new folders for specific data to keep separate from the rest.
Dropbox also gives you a simple interface that is fairly easy to navigate. At first, it looks like a lot of information thrown at you, but that’s due to the volume of menu options. iCloud has drop-down menus, whereas Dropbox puts all of your options in list format, taking up more page space.
Dropbox also has a mobile app that syncs all of your data across your devices. The mobile app looks a little more appealing, giving you bigger buttons, a more stylish menu, and bold colors.
You not only have the option of creating a new folder in Dropbox, but you also have the option to create a new document. That means you can do everything from within your Dropbox account.
Apple uses a minimum of 128-bit AES encryption, which is the same type of encryption many banks use to keep their files secure. This encryption is almost impossible to penetrate, giving you peace of mind when it comes to your data.
Apple uses a two-step verification process to access files, and in conjunction with its AES encryption, it won’t be easy for hackers to get through.
Dropbox is not really known for its security. While it is great for easily transferring files, the security of the service has come into question a few times. In 2013, it was revealed that there is a small team of Dropbox employees that look at all of the files uploaded to its servers. Dropbox also uses a simple, one-step verification process to access an account.
Anyone with an Apple ID has access to their own iCloud Drive already. iCloud offers users up to 5GB of space for free. If you want to go above that limit, your options are 50GB for 99 cents/mo, 200GB for $2.99/mo, or 1TB for $9.99/mo. While you may think 5GB of space is a lot, keep in mind for iOS users, most of that space could be taken up fairly quickly by iCloud backups.
Dropbox offers 2GB of space for free, which doesn’t sound like a lot if you have an extensive amount of data to store. The service also offers different tiers in their price plans. The Pro plan, which is 1TB of space, is $8.25/mo.
The Business plan, which offers unlimited storage, costs $12.50 per user/mo. Dropbox, unlike iCloud, is not used to store your iCloud backup, so you have a little more free space when you consider that.
So which one is better to use, iCloud or Dropbox? Simply put – it all depends on the user. As far as cost and accessibility, both services pass the test, but security is what it all comes down to.
If you need to backup very few files and don’t care about integrating your Apple ID with your cloud service, or maximum security of your files, then Dropbox is a great option for you.
If you take security seriously and want to put your trust in a company that has a proven track record of keeping files safe, then iCloud Drive is ideal.