Chance to consider the ever-changing clouds

JPCT 150713 Alan Stainer. Photo by Derek Martin
JPCT 150713 Alan Stainer. Photo by Derek Martin

The world of technology is changing every day.

Last week I spoke about some mobile apps which I use and are pretty good. I mentioned three apps specifically which allow you to automatically back up the photos that you take with your preferred device. Well, the day the paper went to press, Microsoft updated and replaced their cloud storage solution called SkyDrive, with a new incarnation called OneDrive.

OneDrive is a vast improvement for two reasons. 1. It offers you the capability to automatically back up your photos and gives you an extra 3GBs of space if you do. 2. It integrates with another Microsoft app called Office Mobile for Office 365.

Here is a comparison of the more widely known cloud storage apps as they stand today. As always, I will keep a careful eye on new developments, because it might all change tomorrow!

Four solutions which I use frequently are Google Drive, Ubuntu One, DropBox and the new OneDrive.

They all offer you different amounts of free space to use with an option to buy extra space if you need it. With the exception of Google Drive, each has a method of increasing the free space you are allocated.

Google Drive – 15GBs free.

Ubuntu One – 5 GBs free. Upgradeable to 20GBs free with referrals.

DropBox – 2 GBs free. Upgradeable to 20GBs free with referrals and incentives.

OneDrive – 7 GBs free. Upgradeable to 10GBs free with auto backup of pictures.

Native client support differs for each option. By native client, I mean programs which are written for your specific device, be it a Windows PC an Android phone or an Apple iPad. Here is a quick summary of compatibility.

Google Drive – Windows PC, Mac OS, Android and iOS (iPhones and iPads).

Ubuntu One – Linux, Windows PC, Mac OS, Android and iOS.

DropBox – Linux, Windows PC, Mac OS, Android, iOS and Blackberry.

OneDrive - Windows PC, Mac OS, Windows Phone, Android and iOS.

They all now offer auto backing up of photos. Google Drive is the only one that offers free productivity software as part of the same package. OneDrive does integrate with Office 365, but obviously that requires a paid for subscription to that service.

With all of this free space flying around, there really is nothing to stop you using some or all of the options available. Just with the ones above you could get a whopping 65 GBs of storage space for free!

Alan Stainer