How We Rate Cloud Storage Services
How We Rate and Why It’s Difficult
Putting a stamp on a service saying “this is the absolute best” is quite impossible. Why is that? Because what works for me or my mother doesn’t mean that it works for you. So we try to find objective rating criteria that we apply to our testing routine of cloud storage services. That way we can give you an objective view on a providers features and overall performance. In the end you need to decide if a provider is worth a shot.
Our Beloved Stars!
We all know stars and for a good reason, they are easy to understand and most of you know them from big companies like Amazon. We have brought them together in a nice table so that you exactly know what we mean by a given amount of stars.
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Our General Rating Categories
We have developed a system that allows us to manage our reviewed services and rank them in our Top 10 List. We test each service on a regular basis so that you can be sure our information is always up-to-date.
- Ease of use
This is certainly one of the most important aspects because we believe once you’ve signed up for a cloud storage service it should be smooth sailing from there.
Of course, reliability comes in many facets: uploading of files should be smooth, file sync should be fast and retrieving you data is also a very important component. A service is guaranteed at least 3 to 4 stars which proved to be reliable in those categories.
Security is one the most crucial features a service has to offer. There are two encryption layers that are important: the first most basic is a standard SSL encryption between you and the provider’s servers. Another layer is called “local encryption” which gives you password that protects your data before it is sent over the Internet.
- Customer feedback
We get a lot of emails and reviews from customers and we try to weigh them into our own reviews to provide you with a bigger picture. You can read the customer feedback in our reviews, too, or leave one of your own.
Support can be crucial if you run into problems with your cloud storage service. Some services unfortunately outsource their support staff to India. In that case prepare yourself for a tedious back and forth. However, there are services with 24/7 phone support for your problems.
OK, so you really want to know what we look at the get the best possible picture of a cloud storage service? Well, here you go, grab a coffee and enjoy.
- Server location
- Encryption (local with private key)
- Encryption (off-site)
- Multiple data centers
- Patriot Act
- Incremental backup
- NAS backup features
- Certificates (SSAE16, Safe Harbour)
- Free local backup
- General encryption technologies (448-bit blowfish, AES-256, 128-bit SSL)
- Password protection of shared folders
- Max. file downloads
- Video tutorials
- Searchable knowledgebase
- PDF manuals
File sharing & synchronization
- File sharing
- File sync
- File sharing (public & private)
- Folder sharing (public & private)
- Password protection
- Max. downloads per file/views per folder
- File versioning and version control
- Collaboration & Commenting
- Task management
- File permissions (read/write/create)
- Email based invitation
- Software client
- Web interface
- Protocols (WebDAV, AFP etc.)
- Native mobile access via app
- Speed of access
- General API capability
Features & Pricing
- Storage space
- Bandwidth limit
- File size limitation
- free trial / free version
- Terms and condition
- File formats
- Payment methods
- Additional features
- NAS backup
Sign up & Ease-of-use
- Sign up process
- Payment methods
- Usability & Design
- Upload/Download data/Backup & Restore
- Searchable web interface
- File preview (.jpg, RAW, .mp4 etc.)
- Upload speeds
- Bandwidth throttling for slow internet connections