Affordable cloud storage is a hard thing to come by. And in the modern digital age, it is something that nearly everyone needs to have – what with our multiple digital devices. By this I don’t mean a measly 2 or 3 GB of cloud storage, I mean something along the lines of a minimum 100 GB so that one can safely create a proper backup of files, photos and videos, settings, emails etc online. We decided to check out iDrive that seems to be getting rave reviews for online backup and syncronisation services.
iDrive – How It Works
iDrive does pretty much what you would expect it to, as far as cloud storage goes. You simply create an account and get an automatic free membership with 5 GB of storage. From there you download the client and backup your files. The backup process is really simple. iDrive will display all of your major folders (Documents, Photos, Videos, etc.) as well as the total storage it will take to back up the entire folder. From there, users can select specific files/folders or simply click the Start Backup Immediately button to sync everything at once.
Then there are features that surprised me with iDrive. For one, you can schedule backups so that they take place automatically. This is so incredibly convenient and I can’t understand why it isn’t a standard feature on all cloud backup services. It certainly takes the pain out of backing up files (I’m looking at you, OneDrive). Once you establish a schedule for backup, you can completely forget about doing this task.
iDrive also allows users to see older versions of backed up files. This is great if you accidentally edited something out of a document and need to retrieve it. It is also something that isn’t available on all the other services. If it is there, the it is either limited to 30 days or simply on business/work plans whereas iDrive backs up the previous ten versions of a document/file.
Another very cool feature of iDrive is the ability to backup Instagram and Facebook photos and videos. Players can also sync files between multiple computers, something I haven’t seen before in cloud storage service.
iDrive also happens to use an Archive solution which basically prevents accidental deletion; something a colleague of mine experienced with Box that resulted in all her data getting deleted from Box too when she reinstalled her Windows OS.
iDrive also has apps for Android, iOS, and Windows Phone, something that very few services other than OneDrive can claim, and keeps them all synced real time. Their web based management application allows you to manage the archive, data and settings for all your devices on that one account.
Oh did I mention that you secure your entire backup with your own 256 bit AES encryption? This basically means that your entire data online is accessible only to you as you have the encryption key for it. Your data is only stored in an encrypted format as long as you enable the highest form of privacy at the time of signup.
Now for the part you really care about. How much is all of this going to cost you? As I said before, you get 5 GB for free, but for just $69.50/yr you get real backup space of 1TB. In comparison, OneDrive costs about $84/yr ($6.99/mo) and Google Drive costs about $120/yr ($9.99/mo). Carbonite is fairly competitive at $59.99/yr (for unlimited storage) however they only do cloud backup and have some limitations with each plan. Dropbox gives 1TB for $9.99/mo. Another competitor, SugarSync, only gives you 100 GB for $7.49/mo. 1 TB will cost you a steep $55/month, so iDrive is most certainly the most affordable of the lot. Combine that with the stellar features, and you have easily one of the best cloud storage services available.
iDrive is running a limited time offer that gives 75% off 1st year and 50% off 2 year plans.
iDrive may be the best cloud storage service available. It has incredible and unique features such as security, syncing across multiple devices, scheduling your file backups, archive solution, and accessing older copies of your files. Plus the interface for the mobile and web clients is fluid and simple to use. And of course, there is the affordability.