Most of us don’t fully understand what it means to store files in the cloud; that vague, ethereal place where our files wait for us besides the pearly gates. Cloud storage lets you access your files from wherever you are and whatever device you are on from your work desktop to your your unlocked iPhone. Even the most guarded among us will admit that cloud storage is a good backup solution in case anything goes wrong with our machine. Say for instance you spill coffee over your laptop – don’t you wish your files were backed up in some ethereal plain?

unlocked iPhone

A brief explanation of the cloud.

Alright, let’s get off our cloud and set imagery aside. The cloud is actually a set of giant hard drives or servers located somewhere in a physical hub where someone is maintaining your data and keeping your files secure. The location depends on where your cloud provider has set up its bases. There are hubs all around the world. Your files are stored in a folder with an IP address that links your devices back to your data through the internet. With that out of the way, let’s take a closer look at some of the services providing cloud-based solutions and how they can benefit you.

Google Drive

When you sign up for a Google account – that includes YouTube – Google+ – Gmail – you are automatically invited to store your photos and files in Google Drive. It’s free and with 15GB of storage there’s more than enough space to store photos and larger files. That space is shared by your Google email, but that said, any attachments can automically be stored for convenient safekeeping. Google Drive also includes a series of office tools which work very well and can become Office replacements if you don’t have the money to dish out for Microsoft’s productivity suit.

DropBox

Drag, drop, and Bob’s your uncle. In Dropbox your files can be easily accessed from their webpage or simply from a folder on your hard drive. DropBox is free but storage is limited to 2GB. If you want to increase that capacity you can recommend them on Facebook and other social media tasks. Altogether you can increase your free storage capacity quite a bit.

Glasscubes

Glasscubes is different. Unlike the others their service isn’t predominantly about storage, although they do offer a generous 10GB cloud drive as part of their subscription fee. Glasscubes offer a project management platform from which company employees can collaborate, edit, annotate, assign tasks and converse over chat and share important messages on the virtual message board. If you need a cloud computing solution for business, Glasscubes is worth a look.

Get your head out of the clouds and keep your files safe and backed up in a place beyond spills. Cloud computing technology has come a long way, and many companies now offer a viable business solution that’s effortless and eefective.