Best Cloud Storage Options

by Jeremy Cleland

If you’ve ever gotten a message that your smartphone was too full to save that precious photo of your kid doing something special for the first time — well you’re in luck, those days are over.

I now automatically back up my photos, videos, contacts — and yes, documents — to the cloud using a web-based storage service. This way I never lose my data, and my phone keeps operating as if it were brand-new.

Here are four cloud storage options for smartphones that are reliable and easy to use:


You can store and access your files from any device. Box prides itself on its security features.

Cost: Free for 10 GB storage or $10/mo for 100 GB storage

For: Any smartphone

What you’ll love

Box lets you share large files with a simple link and collaboratively work on files with your network.


Again, you can upload and access your files from any device — and edit files from the app, too.

Cost: Free or $9.99/mo for 1 TB (1,000 GB) of storage

For: Any smartphone

What you’ll love

From the app, turn on Camera Upload to back-up photos automatically from your Camera Roll to Dropbox.

Google Drive

If you’re already a Gmail user, you may want to use Google Drive as your cloud storage option.

Cost: Free for 15 GB, or monthly plans ranging from $1.99 for 100 GB and $9.99 for 1 TB all the way to for $299.99 for 30 TB

For: Any smartphone

What you’ll love:

You can easily attach Drive documents or media to emails, and use the Drive app to make sure your files are always synced and available to all your devices. Just for Android phones, you can scan documents and Drive will save them instantly as PDFs.


With iOS 9 devices you access all the files you store in iCloud Drive.

Cost: Free for 5 GB, or monthly plans of 50 GB for $0.99, 200 GB for $2.99 or 1 TB for $9.99.

For: iOS (though you can access your iCloud Drive from any device)

What you’ll love:

Automatically back up your photos and videos to the iCloud Photo Library and invite your friends or family to see your collection. Up to six members of your family can share iTunes, iBooks, and App Store purchases, and your other data, via iCloud.


Jeremy Cleland has been a spokesperson for several Silicon Valley startups, like Tesla Motors, and spearheaded global stories about technology featured in media like Vice, Time magazine, Forbes and He’s also the dad to a 5-year-old who is already more tech-savvy than him.

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