This is a guest post by Natasha who is a writer, blogger and tech lover.
iPhone users have a dizzying array of cloud backup apps from which to choose. Gone are the days of a little Nokia brick which, if dropped, lost, or stolen, contained nothing more than a few contacts and your high score on “Snake.” Once they get used to having an iPhone, most users tend to accumulate quite a bit of priceless personal and professional files on it. What apps should you trust with this precious digital cargo?
Everyone with any Apple device should use iCloud, but they shouldn’t mistake it for a true backup service. iCloud works quietly at the app level to sync photos, contacts, and calendars between computers and mobile devices.
Signing up for iCloud gets you 5GB of free storage which is plenty of room to store your content, but if you need more you can upgrade your storage directly from your device.
Applications that you use every day with your iPhone are ready for iCloud: iTunes sync your music and Photo Stream automaticaly shares pictures on all your devices. Documents, Apps,Books and Backups and all your content is stored and backed up wherever you go.
You can easily enable iCloud on your iPhone by accessing “iCloud” option in Settings.
Dropbox is a mature service, evident from a name that predates the current airy “sky” and “cloud” trend. While it offers the smallest amount of free storage at 2GB and doesn’t allow simultaneous file editing by different users for collaboration, it does have the most reliable servers. Unlike offerings from bigger companies like Apple, Microsoft, or Google, Dropbox is not constantly being renamed, shut down, or rolled into new services.
Dropbox allows you to share files from your dropbox folder. With one click on link icon you create link to content you want to share. You can also save content from dropbox directly to your iPhone.
Besides paid option, there are ways to upgrade your storage for free. Refering to friends (up to 16GB), link your Dropbox account to your social media accounts (up to 512MB), connect a .EDU email address to your account (doubles your referrals) and similar.
You can download the Dropbox app for free from iTunes App Store.
SkyDrive offers a large amount of free storage, but that 7GB seems less impressive when you learn it used to be 25GB and the latter figure is only available to users who had uploaded a file to the service before April 22. SkyDrive is well integrated with MS products and offers drag and drop back up of files and folders, allowing you to preserve your own organization. Still, how long until SkyDrive is changed or dropped in response to something Google does?
Even though it is Microsoft product, it works pretty good on Apple devices. All you need is SkyDrive account to install and use app for access to your files stored in the SkyDrive cloud server and also files shared with you by other SkyDrive users.
You can download the SkyDrive app from App Store for free.
It might not have the most professional-sounding name, but SugarSync has earned a loyal following by offering 5GB of free storage and adding free space for every friend you refer. SugarSync doesn’t have true drag and drop functionality, but is generally more intuitive than other offerings.
Besides the generous storage, good thing about SugarSync is that you can specify folders to back up. It also allows you to upload multiple photos or videos at once. Ability to view files on screen and good compression controls are also plus. On the downside there is no search in app and no in-app editing.
You can download SugarSync app for free from App Store.
Lesser known and sparsely named, CX sets itself apart by offering 10GB to free users. The elegant service earned a 4/5 from PC Mag, so it’s worth trying out if only to lock in what is sure to be a limited time free space offer.
Besides form elegant online dashboard, it allows owner to share file with other CX users and make comments on files. CX also adds a trending social feature that lets you easily discover what other CX users are publishing.
You can download CX app for free from App Store.
All these services can be upgraded with more storage or additional features for a monthly fee. It’s only a needless expense until you need it and with data recovery costing thousands of dollars, even the most expensive backup service is a comparative bargain. Don’t forget, there’s nothing stopping you from using all of these apps at once for redundant back up or just more space!
Natasha is writer and blogger, tech lover, interested in various technology and internet topics, currently exploring everything related to cloud computing technology, virtual private servers, virtual machines and cloud hosting in Australia.