Dropbox Overview

Now we are all (or should be) mostly aware of Dropbox: what it is & that it’s described as a ‘file hosting service…that offers cloud storage, file synchronisation, personal cloud, and client software’ (definition sourced from Google & Wikipedia itself). Although this is nothing new or extraordinary, there are many others out there: so how do they compare? Well, let’s have a brief overview to find out alternatives there…

Firstly, Dropbox users would be familiar with the standard operating user interface: a basic tiled layout format. Contrarily, with the likes of other competitors in this market, services such as pCloud, Nextcloud, Seafile, Box, Syncthing & of course, the familiar Google Drive as well as Microsoft oneDrive…it’s no wonder that many first time users may be baffled as to which one to opt for. Confused? Let’s have a look at their features then:

The interesting & main offerings of Dropbox are:

Security protocol & decent encryption levels
Speed of access (upload & download)
Storage volume: 2Gb free & often upgradable with free promotions & subsidised plans. From as little as $20 per month, with individual & team offerings, expandable storage with extra security & multiple user features are available
Finally, synch options: i.e. accessible on multiple devices without imposing a quota. Happy transferring!

However, this rosy picture isn’t without its limitations. Without wanting to sounding to cringe, let’s also review some of their drawbacks:

Although not required, transferring data from an existing server to Dropbox can be cumbersome. Whilst customers who are more technically adept or experienced with performing such network related tasks will do so with ease, amateurs or novices may struggle or find this aspect repulsive
Speeds which are faster often warrant self hosting, however Dropbox does not offer this
Let’s not forget that for many, a free service is imperative. Whilst there is a 2Gb complimentary subscriptions, further features do come at acost…for which some of this is not considered nominal, depending on location & country specific demographics. Personal users may suffer from this more than commercial setups

Furthermore, the methodology used to offer such services differs across the board (albeit only slightly in many instances). Accordingly, cloud storage provided by one company may be arguably more securely held in their server than another. This appears more location or country dependent. Speed & ease of availability to access one’s files can be another concern, wherein certain providers offer better services in this respect than compared to others. Moreover, it must be said that a large storage capacity offering doesn’t necessitate fidelity of data: i.e. as aforementioned, security levels differ. Therefore, data security varies, depending on which option you elect.

In summary, whilst there appears to be a plethora of cloud storage available, often via file hosting & synchronisation, options quickly are limited once a user’s needs & abilities are categorised accordingly. Examples of such factors include whether a customer possesses the required technical knowledge to create a server & the ability to handle associated security protocol. Cost can be an issue for some: paying an additional price for extra storage on demand is often not very appealing at all. This can also be impractical in terms of budget constraints. Nevertheless, Dropbox does offer a simple & appealing user interface, especially for inexperienced users.

Dropbox Features

  • File sharing
  • Automatic organization & back-up
  • Any device accessibility
  • File storage
  • Manually set bandwidths
  • Activity audit
  • Automatic updates
  • Team folder manager
  • Admin dashboard
  • Audit sharing activity
  • Group management
  • Connected accounts management
  • External sharing
  • Enterprise mobility management
  • Dropbox badge
  • Plus button
  • File requests
  • File event tracking
  • Invite enforcement

Pricing

Available on: Free, Free Trail, Subscription
  • Starting Price: $15

  • Trail Days: 30 Days