What is the best cloud storage for photos? Who offers a free cloud storage unlimited that is safe? How much does 1 TB of cloud photo storage cost? Find the answers in this article below.
Photo cloud storage is an online storage model in which data (photos) is saved on numerous servers distributed over the network. Different Cloud Storage providers give the customers access to these servers. In other words, there are the online services that offer people to use and store files they download on a remote computer or a hard disk, which they can access using the Internet. However, with the development of Cloud Storages for business, this technology has been improved. Thus users can store their files not on one computer only, but on multiple servers. There is a large number of cloud photo storages, but today I will review several popular ones, which I believe are useful for every photographer and photo retoucher.
|Free||2 GB of space|
|$9.99/month||1 TB (1,000 GB) of space|
|$19.99/month||2 TB (2,000 GB) of space|
Dropbox Cloud Storage is one of the most popular cloud services for photographs on the web that can be used to back up and organize digital photo files. Its main advantage is the high reliability, which is of big importance for every photographer. Dropbox servers are located in several US data centers. To transfer the data and store the information, Dropbox uses the SSL protocol and the AES-256 encryption algorithm, which are used in banks to ensure the security of customer data. That’s why it is the most secure cloud storage for photographs.
Watching a video file in the Dropbox Cloud becomes possible after you share a link to it on the web. In this case, the owner can view any file completely, and the owner of the link – only the first 15 minutes. To view the full video, he/she needs to download the file to the computer. The size of the file that can be uploaded to the Dropbox digital photo Storage via a browser should not be more than 10 GB. To download larger files, you need to use the Dropbox program or mobile application on any device. This is true in cases when the photos are stored as one large archive file.
To work together with the photo files in the Dropbox Cloud, you can create a separate folder and open personal access to any Internet user. At the same time, he/she must register in the service and install the Dropbox program. When creating an account in the Dropbox service, the client immediately gets 2 GB of free cloud space. It can be used to store the digital photos or other types of files as long as the account exists.
If you want, you can increase the initial size of the Dropbox Cloud Storage using different methods. For example, for each new user who registers by your link, you will receive 500 MB of additional cloud space. So you can increase your cloud storage to 16 GB for free. If you register by someone's referral link, you can start with 2.5 GB. It is a very tempting approach, which makes Dropbox the best Cloud Storage for photos.
|Free||Unlimited (14-day trial)|
Founded in 2002, SmugMug is one of the most widespread hosting websites for photographers. SmugMug enables people to post their shots as if in a web gallery with ease and without investing much money. Personally, I have been a SmugMug user for a few years and I have had enough time to test its feature- and toolset.
One of the many SmugMug features which has always amazed me is how the platform preserves the high quality of shots once they are uploaded. The sharpness appears stunning as well, even on high-pixel computers. It isn’t the most significant advantage, but it isn’t offered by that many similar platforms.
For instance, one of the primary SmugMug’s rivals, Zenfolio, doesn’t preserve the quality on the displays wider than 1920 pixels. Not each viewer has a computer with such a high resolution, but the popularity of these monitors is increasingly growing. Many photographers need their shots to look amazing regardless of the device, which SmugMug provides.
Google cloud photo storage is a file hosting service created and developed by Google. Its functions include online file storage, sharing and co-editing. Google Drive includes Google Docs, Spreadsheets and Presentations — a set of office applications to collaborate on text documents, spreadsheets, presentations, drawings, web forms, photographs, and other files. Public documents on the disk are indexed by the search engines.
With Google Drive, you get 15 GB of storage space for photos and pictures, text documents and spreadsheets, audio and video files for free. Similar to Dropbox, Google Drive provides users with effective Cloud file sharing for business. Google Photos is a part of Google Drive, which offers best unlimited Cloud Storage for high-resolution photos up to 16 megapixels. You can use applications on the Mac/PC, Android, iOS platforms. Google Photos is a great photo storage app. All images are ordered, they won’t be lost and the user can access them from anywhere in the world.
Having downloaded a Google Photos app on your smartphone or tablet, you will get:
|$6 per month||200 GB|
|$12 per month||1 TB|
|$23 per month||4 TB|
|$35 per month||$35 per month 8 TB|
MEGA is one of the best free online photo storages. Every user gets 50GB of Kiwi free storage. However, if this space is not enough for you, you can also choose four service levels with packages ranging from 200 to 8TB, all of which are available for less than $25 per month. You can also choose the annual payment with a discount.
This is the best photo sharing cloud that applies end-to-end encryption to protect your data. It works on the principle of a complete removal of unauthorized people, including the developers themselves. A nice bonus is the built-in browser extension. Another pleasant advantage is that MEGA offers several free options to use its service. For example, if you do not have enough storage space, you can invite a friend, as you get 10 GB of memory for each person invited. Having invited several people, you may get some other MEGA services. Would you like to get 15GB more? Download the mobile app to your smartphone or tablet and log in your account. If there isn’t still enough memory, install MEGAsync – the automatic synchronization between your computer and MEGA best Cloud photo Storage, which allows you to safely access your data from different places and devices. You can also test MEGA without specifying your personal data and you will have access to any content that you have downloaded until it expires. Although I did not find exactly how long you can use this method from MEGA website or a PDF document. However, MEGA Cloud Storage has some drawbacks. The limit of MEGA bandwidth is 10 GB (updated every 30 minutes). Thus you can have significant delays while downloading and uploading files.
OneDrive (former SkyDrive) is the best Cloud based Storage created in August 2007 and managed by Microsoft. The OneDrive service gives you an opportunity to store up to 5 GB of information for free. This best online storage for photos provides a preview in the form of thumbnails for images, as well as the ability to view them in the form of slides. You can determine the level of access for all files and folders: from personal to public. Client applications for Windows, Android, iOS, Xbox, OS X, MeeGo 1.2 Harmattan, WindowsPhone, SymbianBelle have been released. An offline version (eng. Standalone) can be obtained for business.
There is support for Office Online in OneDrive. Among the best cloud photo storages is the possibility to download, create, edit and share MS Office documents while working online. Users can create, view, and edit Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and OneNote files directly in their browser. The undoubted advantage of the best Cloud Storage service is the ability to save files by simply dragging or using a web application. A remote access to a computer run by Windows is available. Files On-Demand has been added to OneDrive. The technology allows you to see files in the explorer without downloading their contents to the device.
|$0.90 per month||50 GB|
|$2.99 per month||200 GB|
|$9.99 per month||2 TB|
Apple iCloud Drive is a Storage and synchronization service, primarily related to Apple products, but you can also use the web. The files are automatically synchronized with all devices that are signed into your account, including iOS devices, Mac and Windows computers. However, this best cloud storage for photos doesn’t offer Android support and it’s unlikely to appear in the future. Speaking about iCloud as the best Cloud Storage, you should know that it’s less “capable” than Google, Microsoft, OneDrive because of less flexible settings. If you use Apple devices and office applications, iCloud Drive is a great choice because it is tightly integrated with them on all supported platforms.
However, this is all about iCloud Drive advantages. As I have mentioned earlier, the Cloud has a small number of functions, and you will have constant glitches. If the image or video has been uploaded to the Cloud Storage, there will be a lot of problems with downloading. Weak bandwidth. Well, the last thing I would like to mention is that this is a rather expensive photo storage compared to its competitors.
If you are looking for the best online photo storage free unlimited, then pay attention to this service from a world famous company. The access from a mobile, desktop and Fire gadgets is available. If you are a member of Amazon Prime, you have the opportunity to use the best photo Storage Cloud free of charge. You can share and store a great number of images on different devices. 5 GB of is given to all of Amazon Prime Members and they can use this space to post documents, photographs, and other types of files. There is also an option to exchange files in the Family Vault for 5 relatives or friends. This best cloud storage was created only for a personal use. You are not allowed to apply it for any business purposes.
It is not possible to go on working with this free cloud storage if you stop your membership or don’t renew it. The service counts all the files you uploaded. When you have uploaded more photos than the limit available to you, you can change your plan using the Storage Management settings.
Supported RAW File Types
How to work with RAW image files in cooperation with Amazon products. I offer you the list of some models of photo cameras. The RAW files from these cameras can be detected by Amazon best Cloud Storage services. The disadvantage is the lack of possibility to preview your images. Here are some suitable cameras (the list is not completed):
You can store your images in multiple formats in Amazon Photos and Amazon Drive: CRW (Canon RAW CIFF image), ARW (Sony), and ORF (Olympus). However, the service cannot yet provide the possibility of a preview. Use special programs to view images of these types. First, you need to download files to your account and then open them.
My advice: If Amazon Cloud Drive does not recognize your images like photos, change their format to a DNG (Adobe Digital Negative). Please note that even if your files are properly recognized, some information about the photo (for example, the date and time of the shooting) may not be available.
|$0.90 per month||50 GB|
|$2.99 per month||200 GB|
|$9.99 per month||2 TB|
Box is the best Cloud Storage for photographers, which allows you to share important files without email attachments. Instead, you just need to send another person a link where the file can be downloaded. You do not get much storage space, compared to other Cloud Services, but you have a lot of additional functions, such as task management, files uploading from a mobile application and many others. There are several versions available – free and paid. To get the free Cloud Storage, you need to register. Thus, you will have 10GB of free space. You can also spend $10 monthly and get 100GB. Box also offers to work with two business plans, Business, and Enterprise, which provide unlimited storage and maximum bandwidth for files.
I think this is the main MEGA Cloud Storage competitor, speaking about convenience. First of all, you can share documents just sending the link to the user. Also, you can indicate a date, a certain period and a password on the file. Suppose you have uploaded a work document for your colleague and specified the expiry date until 12.31.2019. After this date, the file will be automatically deleted. Another useful feature is that Box offers automatic management of older versions. What is it? Every time you edit a document, you can return to the old version any time you need, since all the data will be stored until you delete it manually. You can share files and folders with colleagues or set permissions that allow certain users to view or edit files. Box is often called the best cloud service for photos, as you can share images with customers or contractors, and keep the confidentiality of private information. You won’t need software for small groups as there is an option to assign tasks to certain users.
|NextCloud Box||$79. 99 per month|
Nextcloud is a platform for file and content synchronization. It is not a photo cloud storage but it offers free software to download and install Cloud Storage services on your own server. This software combines convenience and easy navigation of other best online Cloud Storages. Besides, you can make open source code, which will provide you with reliable encryption and easy collaboration with your colleagues. Nextcloud allows you to expand and work with more than 150 applications from the web.
However, if you do not have experience working with it, you can purchase a pre-configured NextCloud unit from the website that comes with 1TB hard drive to synchronize data. If we talk about usability, this option isn’t for people, who need Cloud that allows you to add photos, videos or files with one click. This time, the developers indicate that this is a kind of platform that provides a server, which has to be manually configured if you want to use necessary application and functions.
|$5 per month||150 GB|
|$9 per month||400 GB|
|$12 per month||2 TB|
|$25 per month||5 TB|
SpiderOak is a storage that has become popular and can now stand on the same level as the best cloud photo storage thanks to its latest updates and innovations. The site claims that your photos is immediately encrypted before synchronization. However, since SpiderOak does not have an open source code, there is no way to check this information. SpiderOakOne is supported by Windows, Mac, and Linux platforms, as well as by Android and iOS (although Android and iOS are read-only applications, which means that you can only view the files, and cannot download or synchronize anything).
SpiderOak provides a free 21-day trial version with all the functions and features available. If we talk about convenience, it is quite easy and practical Cloud Storage, as it has many functions, which allow you to share, control and synchronize files. You can also set a password on a file in order to limit the number of users, who can access it. There is an option to customize libraries for certain people. There is the unlimited backup of the external drive, however, it doesn’t work for a smartphone. Although, you can use SpiderOak mobile apps for Android and iOS to access your files.
|$5 per month||Personal 2 TB|
|$6 per month||Business 250 GB|
IDrive is the best place to store photos for impatient people. Actually, it is a set of simple but the most useful functions. IDrive is one of the first cloud resources but the storage is quite popular even nowadays. IDrive offers continuous synchronization of your files, even on network drives. Also, this Cloud Storage supports file sharing via e-mail and social networks. You can configure the service that the files will be uploaded themselves. Thus, you may not worry if you have mistakenly deleted them from a computer, as you can always download and return them form IDrive. An equally useful feature that the Cloud provides is IDrive Express. It means that if you have lost all your data, you will be sent a physical hard drive, which will allow you to quickly restore all your backup files.
All in all, I cannot say that IDrive is the best cloud storage for photographers. The reason is obvious – Cloud Storage is fairly simple to use, but at the same time, it has the most necessary functions. It is suitable for users, who do not want to worry about their backups. For those, who want to save money, IDrive has also a reasonable version. Concerning usability, I would like to note that this is IDrive strong side. As I mentioned earlier, the Cloud Storage provides only the simplest, most necessary functions. Simple and convenient interface, easy navigation and responsive technical support – are important advantages.
|$3.99 per month||500 GB|
|$7.99 per month||2 TB|
PCloud is one of the best Dropbox Cloud Storage alternatives, as it offers the same features, but for a lower price. While other Cloud Storages have lots of unnecessary functions, which complicate the work, pCloud has tried to make operation as convenient as possible. Still, its functionality is quite flexible. PCloud is the best online photo storage if you need to create copies, store and share photos, multimedia files, and work documents in the most convenient way. Your files will always be at hand, wherever you are. You just need to have a computer or any mobile device with an access to the Internet.
With pCloud, you can organize file synchronization and their playback right in the Cloud without downloading to a computer. Another advantage is the bandwidth of an unlimited file. In other words, it does not matter what file size you upload, as there is no limit. Thus, you can upload not only high-resolution photos but also videos of the highest quality. That’s why pCloud is often called the best Cloud Storage for videos and photos.
Convenient usage is the main advantage of pCloud. As I have mentioned earlier, the Cloud has a large number of functions, such as file encryption with a password, expiration dates, possibility to generate special download links. All these features are elaborately done. Besides, the technical support is very quick.
|$5 per month||1 TB|
|$50 per month||100 TB|
MediaFire is one of the first cloud photo storages. This is a fairly generous Cloud that offers 50 GB of free storage, a low price, and a good mobile application. But in fact, these are the only advantages. MediaFire has existed for more than ten years and despite this, the developers have not disclosed information about data protection. Although, when you create an account you are told that all the data is protected but it isn’t clear how. Perhaps there is no protection at all. In addition, free accounts have advertising.
I think this is quite natural, as the price is very low and you have to make compromises. All in all, you can hardly call MediaFire the best Cloud Storage for photos. Speaking about convenience and practicality, MediaFire is quite simple. When you create an account, you will immediately get several folders and you do not need to create anything yourself. The functionality of the Cloud is quite simple, but, actually, it is equipped with all the necessary functions. However, when I Worked, I noticed that the download files have limitations. You can’t download videos in high quality since the maximum size of a single file should not exceed 4GB.
|$25 per month||Small Business 2-9 people (1 TB for each)|
|$30 per month||Business More than 10 people (1 TB for each)|
|$30 per month||Company More than 100 people (1 TB for each)|
Tresorit is a Cloud Storage, which primarily focuses on increased security and data encryption for both business and personal use. Tresorit is the free private photo sharing app for those, who are interested in the correct and accurate data encryption. Thanks to the “zero-knowledge encryption,” only you and the users, who you decide to share information with, can ever see your data. Your Tresorit account can also be protected by two-factor authentication. The Cloud also has a large number of useful functions, such as: selected user access to a specific pack, link passwords, download limits and expiration dates.
Tresorit is quite simple to use – easy and quite understandable interface, responsive technical support, and forums. Tresorit costs more than any other cloud storage, but you can get a 14-day free trial version before you make a purchase.
Some users think that Flickr is the best Cloud Storage for photos and videos. It is one of the first photo hosting sites. It has been improved greatly and now is popular among users all over the world. Having registered, the user can store his/her photos in the remote storage. Initially you get 1 TB free Cloud Storage for your files. A user can add a title, a short description, and keywords (tag) to any photo for easy search. You can make notes right in the photo. If there are several objects (for example, several buildings) in the picture, you can select any of them and add a description to it.
A photo may be personal, family, group or public. Any image can be found by keywords specified by the user. For example, a search for the keyword “New York” will activate the list of links to all the photos to which their owners have attached the corresponding tag. The system allows you to search simultaneously for several keywords. You can also use collections of your photos or individual shots on the pages of your sites or Live Journal. In order to get the HTML-code of the link to a separate photo, you need to “ask” the system to generate the corresponding code, which can be copied to the desired page.
Additional services allow users to share photos and tags on them. Attaching labels to the pictures, you can find them quickly. There is a special list with the tags that is displayed for certain images. Due to such a feedback, users of this best photo backup service can communicate through metadata.
Flickr service allows you to get a map of keywords that are most often used when classifying photos. Users of this system can form interest groups with the possibility to conduct thematic discussions, invite other users to the group, share their photos, and view the arrangement of group photos on the map.
What makes Flickr so popular? Mainly, it is the feature to display your images in the stylish photostream. Other users can follow your actions and comment on your pictures, or you can make the pictures private, which is similar to a real social network for amateur and professional photographers. Flickr is designed to present your pictures, not just to store them, so you will only display JPEG, GIF and PNG images.
If you are looking for the best Cloud photo Storage, have a look at this one. The hosting was created for amateur photographers by the popular Canon brand. 15 GB is given free. There is an option to remove duplicates, available RAW pictures, and convenient sharing in this Storage. You can import photos from FB, Google+, Flickr.
Applications are offered for the main platforms, but with very weak functionality. Desktop apps only download photos from the selected folders but they do not synchronize. Mobile utilities allow you to view your archive and upload images, but not in the automatic version. You have to choose one by one. Maybe for someone, it isn’t the largest free Cloud Storage but it’s still worth using.
Moreover, the service Irista will be able to edit photos in Lightroom and create a single photo archive directly on the basis of the platform itself. This digital photo Storage has integration with LR and it will also allow you to transmit XMP data to Irista, search for such data to filter pictures using Lightroom metadata and synchronize photos after editing them. It is definitely the best backup system for photographers.
Thanks to a new user interface optimized for tablets, you have the ability to create photo albums directly on the basis of the platform. This Storage has a direct connection to Canon cameras with Wi-Fi support and other innovative features. The Irista service has become even more flexible and simple.
We concluded for ourselves: Irista came out very successful and gave us a lot of pleasant moments while we were trying it on the tooth. So we will closely follow the evolution of this best Cloud Storage free service.
|Dropbox Pro||$9.99 / month||1TB|
|Dropbox Pro||$19.99 / month||Unlimited space; file recovery; file access control; customizable access levels, priority technical support.|
|Dropbox Enterprise||from $20/ month||Unlimited space; file recovery; file access control; customizable access levels, priority technical support; corporate level.|
A Dropbox Business package allows you to take an advantage of a corporate account for collective. The best photo Cloud Storage also provides unlimited space for personal aims. Moreover, you obtain a number of advanced features such as file recovery and access level settings.
There is no necessity to buy expensive drivers with a large amount of memory. You may also forget about CD and DVD drives. The information is now saved in the best photo backup clouds and all the operations are done there as well. Any time a user starts the necessary remote program, he/she may not worry about his/her safety. The programs will always be updated to the latest version and you won’t need to check or track the updates. Storing information on the server, users can forget about the hard drives limitations. The best photo storage is very flexible and automatically adjusts to the needs of the user. The operating system is of none importance for the “Cloud”. Mac, Windows or Unix users can easily exchange documents. Regardless of the operating system you use, you can easily install the browser and get access to the best Cloud Storage for photos or other files. Working in the Cloud Storage, there is no need to constantly send each other new versions of documents, as they are always available in the latest version. Any change made by one person will be instantly seen by the whole team that is working on the project. The users can work not only from a computer but can access with any other device that has a browser (a netbook, a phone, a tablet or iPhone). If you sent data to the “Cloud”, it will automatically save it and send copies to the best photo backup Cloud Storages, which can be located in different countries and continents.
All Cloud services require an Internet connection. If there is no connection, you can work only with those documents that have been downloaded to the local computer. If there are some problems with the Internet, you won’t get any documents, programs, and files. Some operations related to the transferring of the large volumes of information can be done more slowly than with the programs installed on a personal computer. The speed is also affected by the Internet connection or the servers overloading. For example: Microsoft Excel is much more effective than its analog in Google Docs. Use only the best Cloud Storages 2018 that are time-tested. The “Cloud” must encrypt the data well and make permanent backups so that to prevent any problems. This is the fact. No exceptions. Fortunately, losing data in the cloud is quite difficult and not everyone can do it, even if he/she wants.