The best cloud storage services save you a ton of stress and extra work, for relatively little money. By keeping all your important documents, images, videos and other data in the cloud, you'll have no worries about losing any of it.
Once your data is stored safely in servers across the world, it'll be protected from both accidental deletion and external security threats. Nor will you have to clutter up your home office with physical devices, or mess around with leads and connectors. Instead, you'll be able to upload your files to the cloud easily, with the click of button. Then you'll be able to retrieve them, edit them, share them and more, from anywhere in the world with an internet connection.
But which company should you go with? In this article, we've narrowed these down to the very best cloud storage options available to you today.
You'll also find the information you need to compare them, on everything from price to the level of security they provide. And our list includes everything from premium platforms to cheap and free services, so you're sure to find the best cloud storage here for your specific needs.
Today's very best cloud storage deals
01. EXCLUSIVE: IDrive One-year 5TB plan:
Get 95% off: IDrive is our choice as the best cloud storage service available today, and we've got an unmissable deal to get you started. By clicking this special link, Creative Bloq readers can get a year's worth of 5TB, which would normally cost close to $70, for only $3.48. That's an amazing 95 per cent off.View Deal
02. pCloud: Lifetime subscription, or less than £4 a month
Low cost storage: If you want a guaranteed low price over the long term, the pCloud is the best cloud storage service that offers just that. Plans start at just £3.59 a month, and you get an impressive 500GB of storage for all your files; or you can opt for the very reasonably priced lifetime subscription.View Deal
The best cloud storage services of 2021
IDrive is our pick as the best cloud storage provider overall, as it's well designed, affordable, easy to use, and just does everything you need, for a low price.
It's packed with features, too. For example, you can back up your data to an unlimited number of devices, with real-time syncing. You can access older file restorations, too, which is handy if you accidentally delete something. Plus IDrive works with mapped network drives, so you can use it to preserve full disk images – back up entire systems, in other words – if you choose.
IDrive can also provide you with activity reports, two-factor authentication and end-to-end encryption. If you want to collaborate with others, you can share synced files with them quickly and seamlessly. Security is taken extremely seriously: your data is encrypted with 256-bit AES encryption, both during transfer and at rest, giving it more protection than a service such as Google Drive. And customer support is available by phone five days a week, or by email and live chat 24/7.
You can get up to 5GB of storage on the free plan, and there are paid-for options that run up to 5TB, 10TB and 12.5TB. For more details, read our IDrive review.
Typically, online services are cheap for the first year, but then hike up the direct debit. pCloud, however, allows you to avoid that problem by offering a lifetime subscription. This gets you 500GB or 2TB of storage for a one-off payment of just $175/£159 or $350/£309. Alternatively, if you'd rather pay monthly or annually, it's prices are pretty cheap too. And there's even a free plan which comes with a generous 10GB of storage.
Despite the low prices, pCloud offers a great service, which lets you manage your files in real time across all your devices, using either a browser extension or mobile app. There are no limits on individual file sizes, and backups of deleted and altered files are stored for up to 30 days. Plus there are some great media management tools, which you can use to resize and compress content within your cloud account.
Security is covered by 256-bit encryption and two-factor authentication. There are good file sharing and versioning features. And you can choose whether you want your data stored in the EU or US. Also note that pCloud itself is based in Switzerland, which is famed for its strong privacy laws.
pCloud doesn’t have as many high-end business features as some of its rivals, and support is only provided by email, not by phone or live chat. Also, the maximum 2TB might be enough for your needs. But as long as these aren't deal-breakers, this is the best cloud storage option for long-term low prices. For more details, read our full pCloud review.
Zoolz is an easy-to-use cloud storage provider geared towards businesses that seek long-term data archiving. There's no free option (although there is a free trial), but the paid options are pretty affordable and 10TB is going to be more than enough for most. There's also an option for 'cold storage', which lets you archive files that you won't need to access particularly often, for less money.
Standout features include automatic backups, uploads and syncing to a variety of devices, and AI that groups together objects, faces, documents and text for easier organisation. There's file versioning and a range of search options; intelligent filtering, 256-bit AES encryption and multi-factor authentication. In short, this is one of the best cloud storage options to explore if you need a long-term home for your business archives.
There are two reasons to choose Degoo Cloud over other cloud storage providers. Firstly, because it's designed specifically for photographers. And secondly, because it gives you an extremely generous 100GB of space on the free option.
On top of that, you get 256-bit end-to-end encryption, two-factor authentication, automatic uploading, cross-device support and real-time syncing. The only downside is that you'll get served a lot of ads, you can only use it on three devices, and your account gets cancelled if you don't use it for 90 days. But you can't really complain if you're getting all this for free.
The ads and inactivity limit disappear when you upgrade to the paid plan, and you'll also get more storage (500GB or 10TB depending on your level), support for either 10 or unlimited devices, plus advanced features such as zero-knowledge encryption and a photo-storage maximisers. For more information, see our Degoo review.
Is protecting your privacy and data security your main concern? Then we'd recommend NordLocker, as this is the best cloud storage service for keeping your files safe.
Not only does it offer more powerful encryption than most, but all your data is automatically encrypted before you upload it... so even NordLocker can’t see it. Secure file-sharing, two-factor authentication and master password support are all included as standard. And beyond the security protections, this is a very decent, all-round cloud storage service. The interface is particularly well designed and easy to use, compared to rivals.
With the free plan you get 3GB of storage, while the premium plan gives you 500GB. If you want more than that, though, you’ll need to talk to NordLocker directly. Also note that NordLocker operates via a desktop app only, and so you can't use a mobile app or browser extension. For more details, see our Nordlocker review.
If you use Windows 10, you'll know about Microsoft's OneDrive as it’s built right into the operating system, and includes 5GB of cloud storage for free. And if you take out an Office 365 subscription, you'll get a whole 1TB, with the option to pay for more. Alternatively you can get 100GB of monthly storage without Office 365 at a surprisingly low price.
OneDrive offers real-time syncing, 30 days of file restoration, ransomware detection and a personal vault that protects key files with ID verification. There’s support for multipage scanning, offline folders, automatic photo saving and editing on any device. And as well as using it on your Windows PC, you can also get OneDrive apps for Android, iOS and macOS.
OneDrive may lack some the advanced features of its business-focused rivals, but it’s solid, reliable, easy to use and nicely integrated into Windows. For more details, read our article iDrive vs OneDrive.
Dropbox has been around since 2008, and is very popular, so even if you haven't signed up yourself, you've probably used it to grab other people's files at some point. Its main aim is to make file sharing secure and easy, and it succeeds. We'd describe this as the best cloud service provider for collaboration tools, with its team folders, editing tools, secure file transfers and commenting making it easy to work on files with others.
Other standout features include an intuitive interface, real-time syncing across multiple devices, 256-bit encryption and two-factor authentication. Dropbox also offers an impressive 180 days of file history, and the ability to add watermarks and smart permission options.
The free version offers 2GB storage, while you get more if you pay, and unlimited amounts at the higher levels. The paid tiers also unlock device approvals, audit logging, centralised admin consoles and networking controls. On the downside, these options are expensive than many equivalent cloud storage providers. For more details, read our full Dropbox review.
Do you do most of your work using Apple devices? Then you'll already have access to iCloud and the 5GB of free storage it offers. As you'd expect, the service integrates beautifully with both macOS and iOS, making it easy to store and synchronize your data, and find files when you need them.
There are also good sharing options, clear visual organisation, and two-factor authentication. If you need more storage, you can get 55GB for 99 cents per month, 200GB for $2.99 per month and 2TB for $9.99 per month.
Business users, however, won't find the kind of specialist security or advanced features available in other tools. And while it is possible for non-Apple fans to use iCloud on either Windows or Android, we can't really think of a great reason to do so. For more information, read our articles iCloud vs IDrive and iCloud vs Google Drive.
To access Google’s cloud storage you just need a Google account, an Android phone or a Chromebook, and you'll get 15GB of storage for free. As you'd expect, it's nicely integrated with G-suite apps such as Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Docs and Google Sheets, making it easy to edit, collaborate on, and share your files. Plus if you want to open a file that Google doesn't have an app for, it does a great job of searching for one.
With desktop apps for Windows and Mac, and mobile apps for iOS and Android, you can access all the standard cloud storage features, such as real-time syncing, encryption, offline working and document scanning. You can restore files from up to 30 days in the past, and store photos with no compression.
The paid plans start from $1.99 per month for 100GB. Beyond that, you can get 200GB for $2.99 a month, and 20TB for $9.99. For more information, read our article iCloud vs Google Drive.
If you're looking for vast amounts of cloud storage for your organisation, then Box is a very well worth investigating. With the exception of its starter plan, all of its Business plans offer unlimited storage. Note, though that there's a 5GB limit on individual file uploads.
Box offers some sophisticated security options, data loss protection, note-taking tools and collaboration features. There are bespoke Box apps for Mac, Windows and Android. And because it's been around since 2005, Box is also supported by a LOT of third-party apps: more than 1,500 in total.
We'll be honest: this isn't the best cloud storage solution for personal use. On the free plan you get just 10GB storage, compared with Google Drive's 15GB, and there's a 250MB maximum file size. And its Personal Pro plan isn't very competitively priced. But for business use, including creative freelancers, this feature-rich service with unlimited storage is very much worth considering. For more details, read our full Box review.
Mega is one of the best cloud storage options for free space, offering a whopping 50GB. That's far more than any provider on this list beside Degoo Cloud. And if you need more, you can get 1TB-16TB at some very low prices.
Mega's desktop apps, mobile apps and browser extensions are basic, but usable. They offer seamless syncing and uploading across its apps and extensions. There's also a strong focus on security, with user-controlled end-to-end encryption, two-factor authentication, and endpoint encryption all included. Both chat and file-sharing are encrypted too.
And that's not all. The company even publishes its own source code and cryptographic architecture, which is great practice for eliminating security vulnerabilities. So if you're looking for transparency and support for the open web, this is certainly the best cloud storage provider for you.