Why iCloud, Google Drive, and Dropbox Can’t Truly Protect Your Data

Today, most people understand cloud applications and cloud computing, but some still question the differences between a cloud backup solution, like Acronis, and cloud storage services, such as iCloud, Google Drive, and Dropbox. In some cases, the providers of the latter three products advertise their services as a backup solution. In other cases, consumers believe that anytime they store data in the cloud, it's always protected in the event of loss. Let’s set the record straight when it comes to online backup vs. cloud storage services!

How Are Cloud Storage Services Different From Backup Software?

To start, take a look at the definitions of the different types of cloud storage services available today:

1. iCloud is a cloud solution from Apple Computer Inc. that provides cloud storage and apps for Apple desktop, tablet, and mobile devices. It includes the ability to store documents, videos, photos, music and other data online, and users can synchronize it between iOS-powered devices. Here you can also view iCloud Photos shared between different devices.

2. Google Drive is a personal cloud storage service from Google that lets users store and synchronize digital content across computers, laptops and mobile devices, including Android-powered tablet and smartphone devices. If you delete a file — whether intentionally or by accident — it’s gone.

3. Dropbox is a cloud storage service that enables users to store files on remote cloud servers with the ability to share files within a synchronized format.

The bottom line is that iCloud, Google Drive, and Dropbox are designed for cloud storage with the primary objective of synchronizing data between devices so that documents, videos, photos, and music can be accessed and shared – and they do a good job at this.

For example, you may use your iPhone to take pictures but want to view these pictures on your iPad. You can use iCloud, Google Drive, or Dropbox, which store the pictures that are on your iPhone in the cloud. Then, you can access and view the pictures that are stored in the cloud using your iPad.

While Google Drive and Dropbox are not advertised as backup solutions, Apple does advertise iCloud as a backup solution. However, iCloud can only back up your mobile device and only some of the data on your Mac computer.

On the other hand, cloud backup software (also called online backup) protects data and systems in the event of file loss or deletion, stolen or lost devices, mishaps and disasters. Unlike public cloud storage services, today’s more complete backup solutions can back up everything to both the cloud and local disks and drives. This includes pictures, videos, documents, contacts, calendars, reminders, even an entire computer. You can restore a new device in a matter of minutes and be totally back up, running, and on the go — something that no public cloud storage service can do.

3 Ways Cloud Backup Solutions Provide More Protection Than Cloud Storage Services

Below are three ways that online backup solutions provide more protection and broader features than public cloud storage services:

1. Protects your entire PC or Mac computer — includes the operating system, applications, data, preferences, history, etc. — a full disk image backup protects everything on your computer. And you can restore everything to a new computer quickly.

2. Preserves all your mobile device content – includes pictures, videos, contacts, and events on your iPhones, iPads, and Android devices.

3. Manages all computers and devices from one place – backup and restore all your PCs, laptops, and mobile devices from a single online dashboard. Replace and restore devices any time from any place. This is great for families and households with multiple computers and mobile devices to look after.

Acronis True Image has been backing up computers for millions of people for more than 10 years. The latest Acronis True Image Cloud solution protects your entire digital life, and our latest release now includes support for mobile devices, unlimited cloud storage and personal archiving, and the ability to manage all computers and devices from a single online dashboard.