Home » Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive and Amazon Cloud Drive, Which one is right for you?

Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive and Amazon Cloud Drive, Which one is right for you?

It's pretty clear that people will continue the trend of reducing their need to rely on costly hardware and infrastructure by placing media files in the cloud. Storing your media files in the cloud has many advantages. You can enjoy movies from any phone, tablet or computer that's connected to the Internet, and the cloud can also provide backup for media files so they'll never disappear if your phone gets lost or your computer crashes.

There's an overwhelming number of companies offering cloud storage though, which one to use? Our guide will break down the best cloud storage services, covering how they work and their strengths and weaknesses, to help you pick the one that's right for you.

Microsoft OneDrive

Microsoft's OneDrive is the obvious cloud storage service for Windows users because it's built into Windows 10. It uses Microsoft’s Modern UI design. Folders and files can be created on the web, including Office and OneNote formats thanks to tight Office Online integration. Selective sync was introduced with Windows 10, meaning you don't have to have all of your OneDrive files taking up space on every laptop and PC. There's also a social element to the web version, as various popular social networks are available to be linked to your OneDrive account. This might not improve productivity, but it will make it easy to share files with colleagues.

Price: 5GB free. 50GB for $1.99 a month (£1.99, around AU$2.50)

Sign up for OneDrive here

Where it excels

> Built in to the Windows operating system.

> Easy to open and edit files from OneDrive in Microsoft's other applications, such as Word or Excel.

> Sign up for OneDrive gets you a Microsoft account, which gives you access to Outlook, Xbox Live, and other Microsoft services.

Where it falls flat

> Automatic file organization doesn't always put files in the correct folders.

Best for: If you have a Windows PC, tablet and phone, and need to get to your files from any device with little effort.


Dropbox is one of the only services to offer clients for Linux and Blackberry, alongside the usual Windows, macOS, Android and iOS standards. There's an official Windows Phone app too. Dropbox gets a lot of praise for its clean design, and rightfully so. This service automatically and quickly syncs your files across all of your devices, so you can access everything, everywhere and there is no size limit on files you upload to Dropbox with the desktop or mobile apps.

Price: 2GB free. 1TB for $10 a month (£6.58, around AU$11) with Dropbox Plus

Sign up for Dropbox here

Where it excels

> Works equally well on PCs and Macs, Android and iOS.

> Simple and elegantly designed, easy for anyone to master.

> Its desktop applications seamlessly blend with your computer's file system.

Where it falls flat

> Dropbox's website doesn't let you control how your files are displayed.

Best for: Simple sharing when you use tons of different kinds of devices.

Google Drive

Google Drive is a natural choice for owners of Android devices as it's already integrated, but users of other platforms may appreciate the generous free storage too. It offers two options for uploading photos and videos. "High quality" is free and doesn't count against your storage but the unmolested "Original" quality versions do. Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Presentations, Drawings and files that others have shared with you don't count against your allocation either.

Price: 15GB free. 100GB for $1.99 a month (£1.59, around AU$2.50). 1TB for $9.99 a month (£8, around AU$13).

Sign up for Google Drive here

Where it excels

> Google Drive requires very little setup if you already have a Google account.

> If you use Gmail, it's easy to save attachments from your e-mail directly to Drive with just a few clicks.

> The app can automatically back up your photos on its own, without the need for the separate Google Photos app.

Where it falls flat

> If you use Google Drive's tools to create documents, spreadsheets or presentations, you must export those files to edit them in another program.

> You have to share your storage space with Gmail, so if you're inbox is overflowing, you'll get less cloud storage space.

Best for: Google diehards, or anyone who wants a few office tools with their cloud storage.

Amazon Cloud Drive

You probably didn't realise it, a big part of Amazon's business is cloud storage. Apps are available for iOS and Android, plus for Windows and Mac. There's also the Prime Photos app which is - as the name suggests - dedicated to photos and backing up your phone's camera roll. However, unlike other cloud storage services, the Amazon Cloud Drive app doesn't let you view your files from a folder on your computer. You can upload individual files and download your entire library, but if you want to view them or make changes, you'll need to go to Amazon's website.

Price:  $12/year for unlimited photos, $60/year for unlimited files

Sign up for Amazon Cloud Drive here

Where it excels

> If you already have an Amazon account, you don't need to sign up for a new service, you can simply sign into Cloud Drive.

Where it falls flat

> The desktop app doesn't work with your file system, you can only use it upload or download files.

> You can only view and manage files from the Cloud Drive website, but you cannot upload files larger than 2GB there.

Best for: Anyone with an Amazon Fire tablet or Fire phone, because it's part of the operating system. Unlimited Photos is good for Amazon Prime members, because you get it for free as part of that subscription.

Popular Cloud Storage Comparison

Of course, OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive and Amazon Drive aren't your only options for cloud storage, but they're the most popular ones. Read the in-depth cloud storage comparison below to select the favorite one for yourself.

  Microsoft OneDrive Dropbox Google Drive Amazon Cloud Drive
File size restrictions?
10GB 10GB with website, none with Dropbox apps 5TB 2GB(1)
Free storage?
5GB(2) 2GB 15GB No(3)
Can I earn extra free storage?
No(2) Yes No No
Paid plans
$1.99/month for 50GB(2) $10/month for 1TB $1.99/month 100GB, $9.99/month for 1TB $12/year for unlimited photos, $60/year for unlimited files
OSes supported
Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Windows Phone Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, Kindle Fire Windows, Mac, Android, iOS Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Kindle Fire

(1) There is no file size limit with desktop apps.

(2) In early 2016, Microsoft will change its free storage from 15GB to 5GB and offer a $2 per month for 50GB paid plan instead of its earlier offerings. It will also no longer let you earn free storage.

(3) Amazon Cloud Drive offers limited free storage with an Amazon Prime subscription.

Read More: Backup Blu-ray/DVD to Cloud Storage Service

If you are looking for a simple solution to copy Blu-ray/DVD to Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive or Amazon Cloud Drive, Pavtube BDMagic for Windows/ Mac can be a good choice. As a combo function of Blu-ray copier and DVD copier, this program can automatically bypass all the copy and region protection from all the recently released Blu-ray and DVD movies. You can then convert the non-protected Blu-ray/DVD to common video files for storaging on your cloud service.

Compress Blu-ray/DVD for Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive or Amazon Cloud Drive

As each cloud service has limited storage space for you to view and share data, you can reduce the output video file size in the following ways: 
Trim or cut video to remove unwanted parts or segments 
- Split large video into small parts by file count, length or size 
- Output a file format with better quality and small file size such as MP4.
- Lower the output video resolution 
- Lower the bit rate 20-50% of the default to get small files 
- Lower the frame rate of the video to 15 or 10 fps can reduce the file size by as much as 1/2 or 2/3

Click here to learn more details about how to upload Blu-ray/DVD to Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive and Amazon Cloud Drive.

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