Which Cloud Stores Best: Dropbox or Google Drive?

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Between Dropbox and Google Drive, which would you rather use for backing up your files? Both services offer enough storage space to upload various files and folders for users to easily access from anywhere. Accessible files for personal or professional uses is quite important in today’s age. But which service offers the best cloud storage for productivity, backup and server-like needs?

Dropbox As Your Backup Drive

Dropbox is the perfect solution to store and transfer files across different devices (Computer, tablet or smartphone) while on the go. It’s the perfect solution for both personal and business purposes that enables folder sharing with friends or business team members. Users may store anything from Word documents, PDF, pictures, videos etc to take on the go/access or to just have a backup file. For casual use, users get 2GB of storage space for free and comes with an excellent encryption security that will keep your documents and files safe as they use  256-bit AES and SSL encryption – perfect even for businesses as is. If users would like to upgrade their Dropbox to add a few features, they may do so for $9.99/month and receive 100GB of storage. Pro users can also add another feature in for $3.99/month to enable recovery of deleted files just in case you or someone else decides to delete a file off their Dropbox folder to save hard drive space on their own computer (annoying when that happens). dropbox menu

For business users, Dropbox introduced a business version of  their cloud storage system that provides unlimited storage space. For $15 a month, business users can store as many documents and various files on Dropbox without having to worry about running out of space. It also offers a great alternative for small businesses that don’t necessarily require an office server that can be pricey to build. But one feature that stands out for business users is the ability to share certain documents with an exclusive team in your business which will allow top executives to keep sensitive files away from lower employees. Free or pro-users cannot access this feature.

Whether you are on vacation or a business trip, users can share, access, update or backup files without the need to carry a physical drive. Backing up vacation photos, updating documents for co-workers while out of the office is very efficient with Dropbox’s cloud storage service. Dropbox has a pretty good business pricing table laid out for you. However, you will require a word editing program to edit documents and spreadsheets as Dropbox doesn’t come with any tools for that – it’s only for cloud storage!

Google Drive Suits Document Storage

Google Drive is popular among anyone who has a Google account. Well maybe not everyone uses it but it is available to anyone who has a Google account, which many do. Like Dropbox, users can upload all sorts of files and be able to access them anywhere from their computer, smartphone and tablet. Users receive 15GB of free storage space, which is 13GB more than what you would receive from the Dropbox’s free to use option. There are payable options to receive more storage space but there is no options for an unlimited amount of space which Dropbox offers that targets the business user.

google drive menuAn advantage with Google Drive is the ability to edit documents on the spot via Google Doc application and updates it instantly. This makes editing documents and spreadsheets much easier as users wouldn’t have to worry about not having a word document editor with them as Google Docs is the default software for this task when using Drive. However, auto syncing files or folders to easily backup your photos, music and documents from your smartphone or computer isn’t an option which makes it seem that Google Drive is best used for document writing and editing purposes. Uploading various files to access on the go is decent with Google Drive, but don’t expect it to act as your backup space or data server like Dropbox can.

If you are thinking about storing or backing up your personal files and take with you away from your computer, Dropbox is your best bet. Even business use is a great option with Dropbox as it offers a way for you to retrieve old lost documents and share documents with the team. Google Drive on the other hand, is much better suited for storing and editing document files which can be very efficient for business users that require sharing and updating documents quickly and wouldn’t have to worry about not having a word processing software. There are of course other services you can use, like Microsoft’s OneDrive which works in tandem with Microsoft Office for documents, and Box. Dropbox is your best friend when it comes to ease of use and efficiency to backing up files – the need for a word processing software can be solved quite easily through mobile device apps and who doesn’t have a word document software in today’s age anyways?

Andrew is a co-founder of DeviceCritique. As a tech savvy individual, he aims to explains tech in a simple manner while also providing support for those who need help with their devices or computers.

4 Comments

  1. Copy.com is another great cloud storage option that should be compared. It’s managed by Barracuda. It works very similarly to Dropbox, except that you start with 15GB of storage and get get an additional 5GB for every referral (compared with 2GB and .5GB for Dropbox). Shared space is also divided among shares on a pro-rated basis, so a 1GB shared is divided equally among the number of people sharing.

    If you join from a referral, you also get the additional 5GB, starting with 20GB (more than Dropbox’s maximum free amount) So here’s a link to Copy.com. If you use this referral, you’ll start with 20GB.

    https://copy.com?r=t3Jz1w

    Reply
    • A cloud service to check out for sure!

      Reply
  2. Hi Andrew, I enjoyed this comparison and feel you did an excellent job of comparing the two services, however, I think there is one thing you need to mention, that the service you choose depends on what you’re backing up. If it’s just personal files, these services are, in the end, really no different, and you’re probably best, at this point (until storage is free which shouldn’t be too far from now), going with the service that gives you the most free storage. Google Drive offers 15 off the bat, but you can certainly work your way up to more than that with Dropbox. Of course, if you do have to pay, then there’s no question you want to go with Google Drive, as it is significantly cheaper than Dropbox (not to mention much more flexible). The problems with these two if you’re uploading important documents (i.e. you are a business-grade cloud user) is that, as I’m sure everyone is familiar with, there are major security issues, and with Dropbox in particular. So if you’re just uploading photos or music, then Dropbox or Google Drive is fine, but if you need something important to be backed up in the cloud, you probably shouldn’t rely on these companies keeping your data safe–Dropbox actually can access your data if they choose too, which is another major security concern in the event that Dropbox is hacked. Also, while it may be convenient to use Dropbox and Google Drive for important documents use, the fact that they also lack a lot of basic enterprise features (drive mapping, ftp hosting, permission settings, etc.) makes these two less than ideal for business use. One last thing about Dropbox, they use Amazon S3, so they can claim to be “unlimited” but in reality they are very limited by Amazon. Just in general, “unlimited” is typically too good to be true.

    Reply

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