OneDrive vs Dropbox

OneDrive vs Dropbox

OneDrive vs Dropbox are professional cloud storage providers for creating photo/file backup, protecting your work from being wasted, and getting more space for less money.

onedrive vs dropbox

OneDrive vs Dropbox: Main Features

Can’t decide what cloud storage to choose? Let’s take a look at Microsoft OneDrive vs Dropbox comparing them according to several important criteria.

What Is Microsoft OneDrive?

onedrive interface

OneDrive – previously known as SkyDrive, is Microsoft's answer to the entire range of cloud storage technologies. OneDrive is compatible with most major platforms, including Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, and Chromium.

Access to the Cloud storage is performed directly from your desktop without going to their official web page. One of its biggest advantages is integration.

What Is Dropbox?

dropbox interface

Dropbox is a file hosting service that includes personal cloud storage, a synchronization service, and a client software. Dropbox creates a special folder on your computer that is synchronized in such a way that it contains identical files regardless of the device.

The application has a 256-bit AES file encryption system, which makes it the safest option for business.


VERDICT: Comparing Dropbox vs OneDrive in pricing, I can say that there is no significant difference, however, OneDrive is more flexible, thus surpassing the opponent. While Dropbox offers a minimum of 1TB of memory, OneDrive offers a 50 GB version and a family plan.


onedrive prices

Microsoft provides 5GB of free cloud storage, which is enough to start. If you need more, you can choose a suitable subscription. As for pricing, OneDrive Storage features three separate plans: Personal, Business and Business Premium.

The Office 365 Business Premium plan is not popular, but it has some nice bonuses. In addition to 1TB of memory, you will have access to powerful Office apps.


dropbox prices

Dropbox offers only two types of plans: individual, with profitable service transactions and business. After registration, you will have 2GB of storage space. Also, you can get more free space with the help referrals.

You can increase your free account up to 16GB maximum. For those who need more space, there are several different plans, among which Dropbox Pro with 2TB Cloud storage is the best choice.


VERDICT: To see who is better: OneDrive vs Dropbox when it comes to the synchronization process, I ran several tests on my Windows laptop and measured file transfer speed. I sent a 300MB compressed folder.

As for the first file transferring, OneDrive slightly surpasses its competitor. The reason is that OneDrive does not offer the incremental file transfer to its network. This means that the changed files are completely replaced every time the file is modified.

In other words, some users may need to wait longer, in case the file is big. However, unlike the previous comparison, now Dropbox appears more flexible. The app supports more platforms, including Linux.


onedrive synchronization

OneDrive is pre-installed on Windows 10 devices and is an integral part of the operating system. A user, who have Mac OS 10.9 version and higher can also download and install the application, however, the developers are not yet friends with Linux and there is simply no supported version.


dropbox synchronization

Dropbox allows you to synchronize content on any device on which you have installed the application, including such operating systems as Windows, Mac OS, Linux. When you install the app on your computer, there will appear a synchronization folder that can be used like any other folder in your OS.

File Sharing

VERDICT: It is obvious that OneDrive will be the best choice if comparing file sharing capabilities, and there are several reasons for this. First, using Dropbox, you will get advanced link controls only after purchasing Dropbox Professional, which is quite an expensive subscription.

Secondly, the speed and responsiveness of OneDrive greatly surpasses its opponent. Though, OneDrive does not have the function of requesting files.


onedrive file sharing

Unlike Dropbox, OneDrive has many functions to securely share files with any paid subscription. You can allow access using email addresses or creating a link for cooperative use.

You can add passwords and expiration dates when creating links to restrict access. There is a permission option that allows editing and more.


dropbox file sharing

Dropbox offers almost identical features, but in order to get them, you must be subscribed to the plan that costs at least $20. In addition to other settings, you can come across a router for file requests, which OneDrive and several other cloud storages, such as Google Drive can’t don’t simply have.

Cooperative Use and Content Control

VERDICT: Both providers do an excellent job and make it easy to share content. However, I’m confused by the inability to adequately protect my content in OneDrive. Dropbox will be more flexible, including better auditing options and more flexible file restoration.

Yes, it has a small flaw - you should be subscribed to an expensive plan, but the security of your files in cooperative use will also be a level higher.


onedrive content control

OneDrive storage has one of the most attractive interfaces among all cloud services. It is properly designed and allows you to easily exchange files with several people at the same time.

When you open the access to a folder or file, OneDrive creates a URL link pointing to the file/folder itself. You can use different permission parameters allowing users to edit shared content or only view them.

To share content, you can copy the link and send it manually or use e-mail services, social networks, etc.

However, OneDrive does not allow setting passwords or expiration dates for shared links. Therefore, I recommend you to monitor the users who have visited or are visiting the page.


dropbox content control

File sharing with Dropbox is done via the web interface. To do this, you need to select the necessary files and click on the “Share” button. After that, the app automatically creates a link to these files. You can share manually or with the help of specific individuals from the interface (friends).

One of the main advantages of Dropbox over its opponent is the ability to set a password and link expiration dates. However, you must remember that these functions are not available in the free account.

On the "Shared Access" tab, you can see which folders and files you shared, and which are available only to you. The “Links” tab allows you to manage link settings related to the general content. There is a third page called “Activity” where you can check the overall activity of your account.

If you or one of your co-authors make an unwanted file change or accidentally delete a file, Dropbox will allow you to recover both deleted files and the previous versions.


VERDICT: It is something Dropbox can boast of. OneDrive, in turn, has some problems connected with it. Dropbox uses several security protocols: VPN encryption with SSL/TSL, two-step verification process, 256-bit AES encryption for documents, fully integrated with most SAML providers.

Moreover, even though Dropbox is compatible with most corporate firewalls, the program should not be hosted outside the firewall.


onedrive safety

During file transferring, OneDrive uses SSL/TLS encryption. However, you should understand that all data at rest is only encrypted for OneDrive for Business. I have examined many reviews and understood that hacker attacks are a frequent problem.

You should also know that recently, Microsoft has admitted that it scans files for inappropriate content. In accordance with internal policies, copyrighted files are not subject to deleting.


dropbox safety

Dropbox, in turn, is more effective in protecting files. In addition to the TSL secure transport layer, and 128 AES encryption, the developers suggest using 256-bit encryption. This approach eliminates the hacking attacks. You need to understand – the simpler the encryption, the faster the download speed.

As soon as files arrive in the Dropbox data center, they are decrypted. After that, the content of the file is encrypted again, this time using 256-bit AES. However, I don’t like that metadata is presented as a simple text, because, in such a way, you can get a lot of information.

In addition to that, you can always set up a two-factor check of access to your data, which significantly reduces the percentage of hacking your files.

Interface and Tools Arrangement

VERDICT: Trying to figure out what is better – Dropbox or OneDrive in terms of interface usability, you must understand that these apps have different approaches to interfaces, but the basic functionality that is necessary to perform everyday tasks is almost identical.

Actually, OneDrive seemed to be more flexible, as it has several useful integrations, including Skype and Outlook.


OneDrive’s interface is one of the most attractive among the cloud services. I like clear lines and transitions, a good font and a nice color tone. Links located on the left side are responsible for viewing saved files, recently used files, deleted photos and connected computers.

Using the icon at the top of the screen, you can start a Skype session, open an Office application, view a calendar, and make a note. It is interesting to note that Office applications will not open as separate tabs on your PC, but as a web page. However, for this feature, you need Office 365 subscription.

The rest of the “free space” will be occupied by your photos and folders with photos/videos. This maximum minimalism makes the application surprisingly simple and intuitive.


Dropbox’s user interface is also fairly simple, but less effective. On the left side, you will find several links, on the right and in the middle, there will be a working place.

In the “Home” section, you will find content that is marked as important or just a list of recently used documents. The “My Files” section contains your downloaded files and you can access content directly from the net. For this, you will need to use the link.

The interesting feature that makes Dropbox more interesting to users in OneDrive vs Dropbox competition is the possibility to view the presentations of such extensions as: .csv, .docx, .pdf and .xls.

There are many third-party applications that can be connected to the Dropbox API to provide additional features. For example, you can connect the Slack chat tool or a project management tool to Dropbox. However, there is only one built-in app, called Dropbox Paper. It allows you to take notes of important events without leaving the Cloud storage.

OneDrive vs Dropbox: My Choice

Having coped with this survey, I can single out the features that will help you choose the winner of Microsoft OneDrive vs Dropbox battle.

The first and most important is security. DropBox is several times ahead of its rival, with its 256-bit encryption, and two-stage connection.

OneDrive pricing is almost identical to the one Dropbox has, but OneDrive features a more flexible approach and offers more options.

The last thing I would like to point out is control over the shared content. Although OneDrive offers all sorts of functions for any paid subscription - Dropbox does it better.

Our choice is Dropbox if you are worried about your files. However, OneDrive is still a good option if you are looking for something flexible.

Ann Young

Hi there, I'm Ann Young - a professional blogger, read more

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