Best cloud storage of 2024

It's April 2024 and, as ever, we've updated this page with the best offers we can find, and are doing our level best to keep you up-to-date with developments in the high octane world of cloud storage services.

Strictly speaking, you don’t need a cloud storage solution, but for peace of mind in an enterprise setting, it’s advised to back up data according to a ‘3-2-1’ backup strategy, and cloud backup is an affordable way to get there. 

Last month, in celebration of World Backup Day 2024, we published a new write-up with all the facts, and a discussion of why backups are important for sensitive data in a business setting, that should stand the test of time.

Cloud storage is also commonly bundled with online collaboration tools, such as Google Workspace and Microsoft 365, which have become commonplace amidst the Covid-19 pandemic.

In practice, it’s often more cost-effective, especially in an enterprise setting, to opt for these kinds of services when choosing the cloud storage for business. Offering plenty of storage capacity and more besides, they make it easy to secure, access, and share files, photos, and email wherever you are, online, on desktop, and on mobile.

However, you might have reservations about opting for a Big Tech company's cloud storage services. That could be down to data privacy concerns, not wanting to put all of your eggs in one basket, or to feel more confident that pricing won’t gradually skyrocket. 

Accounting for budget is so important to us, in fact, that we've listed the best free cloud storage services, plus lifetime cloud storage deals, which charge a large one-off sum for unlimited access to a hefty data allowance.

When reviewing the best cloud storage services, our main concerns while testing were ease of set-up, security, sync speeds, and sharing performance. We also checked file recovery and versioning options, so everyone’s on the same page.

IDrive

1. IDrive: 10TB of storage for $4.98
Cloud storage veteran IDrive offers an incredible amount of online space for a small outlay across a wide range of platforms. 10TB of storage for $4.98 for the first year is unmatched, as is the support for unlimited devices and the extensive file versioning system available.

Preferred partner (What does this mean?)

pCloud pCloud

2. pCloud: Save on lifetime cloud storage: pCloud is more expensive than the competition, but the one-off payment means that you won't have to worry about renewal fees that can be horrendously expensive. 2TB for life for $399 while the 10TB plan costs only $1,190.

Preferred partner (What does this mean?) 

3. Reader Offer: $100 off Sync Pro
Sync delivers outstanding value for anyone looking for terabytes of cloud storage space, and the secure file sharing and collaboration features are an added bonus. Get $15 per user, per month for unlimited storage

3. Reader Offer: $100 off Sync Pro
Sync delivers outstanding value for anyone looking for terabytes of cloud storage space, and the secure file sharing and collaboration features are an added bonus. Get $15 per user, per month for unlimited storage with this exclusive offer from us.

Preferred partner (What does this mean?) 

The best cloud storage services of 2024 in full:

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Best overall

TechRadar Editor's Choice award logo

(Image credit: IDrive)
Best overall

Specifications

Free tier: 5GB
Storage size: 5-10TB
Number of devices: Unlimited

Reasons to buy

+
No annoying device limits, connect as many as you need 
+
Excellent security 
+
Highly configurable 
+
Easy to use 

Reasons to avoid

-
No unlimited storage option 
-
 Appealing price point is for a “limited time only” 
Subscribe if:

✔️  You want a cloud storage service that is feature-rich: IDrive boasts a significant number of features, including Snapshots, which lets you store up to 30 different versions of your files and a physical recovery option.

✔️ Flexible backup options: With IDrive, users can back up an unlimited number of devices – computers, mobile phones, servers – to a single account.

✔️ You need cloud storage you can trust with your life: With IDrive’s end-to-end encryption protocols, you can be confident that any files you store are safe from prying eyes. 

Don't subscribe if:

❌ You're on a strict budget: IDrive isn't the cheapest cloud storage on the market, with some of the more  appealing price points only available for a “limited time only” 

❌ You've got ambitious growth plans: There's no unlimited storage options, which could be an issue for some enterprises.

You want a slick interface: The user interface of the desktop client does leave a little to be desired.

Bottom line ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

IDrive is a terrific cloud storage solution - a fantastic all-rounder with an easy-to-use backup option. It offers a great balance between security, usability and performance. 

Want to know more?

Check out our in-depth IDrive review for a closer look at the service, and see why it's our top cloud storage pick for 2024.

IDrive tops our best cloud storage charts with its appealing mix of easy-to-use desktop and mobile apps, excellent backup features, strong security and great value.

Signing up gets you from 10TB (personal) to 50TB (business) , but pure storage is just the start. Sync support keeps files up-to-date across all your hardware, and excellent backup features enable protecting everything from individual files and folders to full SQL, Exchange, SharePoint and other servers. We found this was very easy to use, and our tests revealed iDrive's performance was a close match to Google Drive and the other top contenders.

The service is strong on the security fundamentals, with end-to-end encryption and two-factor authentication to protect you from attack. 

It also excels at extras, such as an option to transfer your data to iDrive on a physical device, ideal if you've a slow internet connection and 50TB to protect. IDrive sends you the drive, pays return postage (in the US), but it's still free once a year for personal users (three times for business plans.)

The free tier gives you a decent 10GB of storage, more than enough to try the apps and get a look at what iDrive has to offer. And if you like what you see, right now there's a spectacular deal offering 10TB storage for only $4.98 for the first year, amounting to little more than $0.01 a day.

Read our full IDrive cloud storage review.

Performance: This is an area where IDrive really shines. It boasts fast upload speeds and a file recovery feature that is especially handy if you think you’ve lost some important data. IDrive also provides block-level syncing when you are syncing files from a device, such as a smartphone or tablet, to the cloud. 

Other backup features, including disk image backup, NAS backup and server backup, are useful additions depending on what you’re looking for from your cloud storage.

Security: IDrive is certainly no slouch on the security front. It comes with two-factor authentication and end-to-end encryption to protect your data. This works via a private key that is unique to you, so look after it!  

There’s also the offer of standard encryption, which although not as secure as end-to-end encryption, still provides protection against most potential breaches. It also means a bit less responsibility for the end user as iDrive keeps hold of the encryption key, so you can restore your data whenever you need to, without having to remember a private key.

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IDrive test results:
AttributesNotesRating
DesignA bit lacking in places - especially outside the desktop version⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useNot always the most intuitive, but worth the effort.⭐⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceFast upload speed and great feature set.⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacyIDrive offers end-to-end encryption⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer support24/7 live chat, telephone and email support⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Additional featuresSingle sign-on, server cloud backup, remote computer management⭐⭐⭐⭐
Time to upload 1GB4m22s - very fast⭐⭐⭐⭐
Time to download 1GB2m27s - still very respectable⭐⭐⭐
PlatformsPC, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux⭐⭐⭐⭐
Versions kept30⭐⭐⭐⭐
PriceNot the cheapest but a great free plan⭐⭐⭐

Best lifetime value

(Image credit: pCloud)
The best value cloud storage service - amazing value for a one-off fee

Specifications

Free tier: 10GB
Storage size: 500GB-2TB
Number of devices: 5

Reasons to buy

+
Great value lifetime plans 
+
Desktop, mobile and web apps 
+
Play media files without downloading 
+
Business plan restores versions up to 180 days old 

Reasons to avoid

-
5 device limit 
-
Unintuitive interface
-
Storage allowances may not be enough for some use cases 
Subscribe if:

✔️ You want a free plan without restrictions: pCloud implements zero limitations on file size or speeds for their plans.

✔️ You need social media integration: You can back up images and videos on your accounts, like Facebook and Instagram,  directly within pCloud.

✔️ You want block-level syncing: This means upload speeds will be much quicker as only the parts of your files that have changed will be synced.

Don't subscribe if:

❌ You need a built-in document editor: This isn't included in pCloud, so if you need one you might be better off going with rivals like Google Drive or Microsoft Onedrive. 

❌ You use a lot of devices: With pCloud, it's recommended that no more than five devices are connected to a single account - this may not be enough for individuals with a lot of devices on the go at once.

The user interface is important to you: This can feel a little old-fashioned but there's a six-step wizard to help you get started.

Bottom line ⭐⭐⭐⭐

pCloud is a great value cloud storage service with a fantastic free plan and the kind of social media integration that few of its rivals can match. 

Want to know more?

Check out our in-depth pCloud review to see why this cloud storage service is worth your consideration.

Swiss-based pCloud stands out from the cloud storage crowd for its hugely advanced file sharing features. If regular download links aren't enough, you can create special download pages with custom messages, build slideshows of shared images, even stream audio or video files directly from your storage space.

There's no monthly pricing model, but annual plans are fair value at $49.99 for 500GB (very economic, in our opinion), $99.99 for 2TB. 

Even better, pCloud's lifetime plans give you 500GB forever for a one-off $199, 2TB for $399, or 10TB for $1190. There's a 10GB free plan, too, though beware: like Internxt, you must sign up friends, install the app and do other tedious things to get the full amount.

We found the service very easy to set up and use. Sample folders and files helped us immediately try out its powerful file management and sharing features. We had no issues connecting our account to Facebook, Instagram and other social media accounts, and backing up their content. 

The desktop app adds a Dropbox-like virtual drive to your file manager, simplifying operations, but Internxt's mobile app can make life even easier by (optionally) automatically uploading pictures and videos direct from your phone.

There's also offline functionality on offer here, so you can access your shared files via your computer or mobile even if you don't have a working connection. Then, as soon as the connection is restored, there'll be an automatic sync. Browser extensions are also available for FirefoxChrome, and Opera, allowing you to save audio, video and pictures directly from a web page to your pCloud account.

There's a lot to like here, but we also noticed one or two issues. The desktop interface is a little dated - not quite as slick as some of the competition. 2TB isn't a lot of storage by today's standards, either, and iDrive's Personal plans can give you up to 20TB for only a little more.

Read our full pCloud Cloud Storage review.

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pCloud test results:
AttributesNotesRating
DesignSome bugs aside, pretty intuitive⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useClear, and a set-up wizard to get you started⭐⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceHolds up well against competitors, but versioning is restricted somewhat⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacyGood security protocols and confident about its safeguards⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer supportSomewhat lacking. A live chat option would be handy.⭐⭐⭐
Additional featuresExtended History, crypto drive, file manager⭐⭐⭐
Time to upload 1GB4m4s - very fast⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Time to download 1GB1m15s - rapid⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
PlatformsAll⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Versions kept-Row 9 - Cell 2
PriceReasonable and the lifetime-options are a bonus.⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Best for syncing

(Image credit: Sync.com)
The best cloud storage for strong security that's easy to set up

Specifications

Free tier: 5GB
Storage size: 1TB-6TB
Number of devices: Unlimited

Reasons to buy

+
Easy to use 
+
Excellent speeds 
+
Microsoft 365 support 
+
Comprehensive file sharing tools
+
Good multi-user deals 

Reasons to avoid

-
Single folder sync 
-
Above average prices for individuals
Subscribe if:

✔️ You need a team-friendly platform: Microsoft 365 integration allows for live editing and there's strong control regarding who can see your files.

✔️ You need strong security protections: End-to-end encryption and two-factor authentication are both on offer with Sync.

✔️ You want a cloud platform that's easy to set up: Recently revamped desktop clients and mobile apps make it straightforward to get going with Sync.

Don't subscribe if:

❌ You want more advanced interface options: Aside from progress indicators and a recent changes list, there's not much going on with Sync's desktop dashboard. 

❌ Single folder syncing is an issue: Some competitors provide block-level syncing but not Sync.

You need reliable customer support: While there is user forum and knowledgebase to help with troubleshooting, the only way to directly contact Sync is via email. 

Bottom line ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

Sync is a competitively priced cloud storage platform that has some solid features. It's only let down by limited customer support and the absence of block-level syncing.

Want to know more?

Check out our in-depth Sync cloud storage review for insights on why this cloud storage platform offers such reliable out-of-the-box security.

Sync.com may not have the range of features you'll see elsewhere, but, as the name suggests, it excels at simple file syncing, delivering an easy-to-use, speedy and secure service that works for personal and business users.

There's still plenty of power here. Sophisticated file sharing allows creating read-only, password-protected or expiring links, set download limits and more. Sync.com's versioning supports restoring files from at least the last 180 days (most providers stop at 30.) 

The mobile apps can automatically sync photos and videos as you take them, while two-factor authentication and end-to-end encryption keep your account and data safe.

Elsewhere, we found Sync.com's apps and web interface slick and easy to use, and performance was a real highlight, with both upload and download speeds amongst the best we've seen.

Sync.com particularly impressed us with its team-friendly features, including the ability to add comments to file-sharing links, share folders with groups of people, open and edit Office documents direct from your Sync space (if you've Office 365) and manage all your users from a central console.

There are the rudimentary file and folder sharing features you'd expect here but there's also support for more advanced sharing controls, including the option of adding password protection and expiry dates on any links you do share. 

In addition, if you subscribe to a team account, you'll find that your files gain added security from protocols like HIPAA, GDPR, and PIPEDA. PIN code locks are also provided for the Sync mobile apps. 

Prices start higher than most providers, with a 2TB personal plan costing $96 a year. However, demanding teams can get unlimited storage for only $360 per user per year (minimum two users), which works out at $15 per user per month. 

There's a 5GB free plan for you to try out, and you can expand this to 27GB by carrying out various tasks (some as simple as creating a folder. We're not huge fans of this kind of busywork generally, and always suggest buying in if you have a pressing need to store sensitive data at scale.

Read our full Sync cloud storage review.

Best for security

(Image credit: Internxt)
The best cloud storage for security with some pleasing privacy touches

Specifications

Free tier: 10GB
Storage: 20GB-20TB/ user
Number of devices: Unlimited

Reasons to buy

+
Advanced security features
+
Reliable customer support
+
Easy-to-use interface

Reasons to avoid

-
Limited collaboration features compared to more established competitors
-
Several hoops to jump through for the free plan
Subscribe if:

✔️ You want advanced security features: Internxt is a zero-knowledge file storage service focused on absolute privacy

✔️ You need reliable customer support: Chat support is responsive and the Help Center is extensive.

✔️ You want an easy-to-use interface: An intuitive interface most users will be instantly familiar with.

Don't subscribe if:

❌ You want free storage without limits: The download limit on shared files, for example, isn't included in the free plan.

You need more advanced features: Features like file versioning, offered by some rivals, aren't available here.

❌ If collaboration is important to you: In-app collaboration isn't on offer.

Bottom line ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

Internxt has a clean interface and first-rate security credentials. Although some advanced features are lacking, reliable support means this is a cloud storage platform well worth a look.

Want to know more?

Check out our in-depth Internxt review for a closer look at this cloud storage platform's excellent security credentials.

Internxt is a security-focused cloud storage provider who applies multiple technologies to ensure your data stays safe. End-to-end encryption shields your data from snoopers; the service stores files in chunks spread around its networks, protecting it from hardware failures; a virus scanner checks your files for malware, a password generator to protect your accounts, and a temporary email.

You can be sure of this as, unlike other 'secure' cloud providers, Internxt is committed to open source. This means that the source code for their apps are available on Github so developers can check that end-to-end encryption and other features have been set up correctly.

Paid plans start at just $5.49 a month for 200GB, which is a very competitive price if you're looking to extricate yourself from a big tech provider like Google Drive.

You also get 2TB for a reasonable $10.99 per month, and can enjoy annual and lifetime plans of up to 10TB, and checkout using various payment methods such as credit and debit cards (including Mastercard, VISA, American Express, and more), PayPal, bankcontact, iDeal, and SOFORT.

Business plans were available from Internxt for a time, but the company is, as of March 2024, directing users to sign up to an e-mail list to be notified when these become available again.

Internxt also offers up to 50% off of its lifetime plans occasionally - such as when we last checked in March 2024 - so the website's worth checking every now and then if you think you'll get value from the long term investment.

We found Internxt's well-designed web view and apps did a good job of helping us find and manage files. Windows Explorer and Mac Finder integration made uploading as simple as a drag and drop. Sync support keeps files up-to-date across all your devices, and you can share files with others via custom links.

Internxt can't quite match the advanced features you'll find with OneDrive or Dropbox, and it comes with a free plan with plenty of optional hassle built in.

By default, Internxt offers 10GB for free, but to get more without paying a dime, you must install both the desktop and mobile apps (1GB each), share a file via a link (1GB) and invite five friends. (1GB each).  Really, regardless of provider, the measly extra capacity doesn't justify the effort in this day and age.

Still, Internxt's security-first approach and quality apps do appeal, and it more than deserves a place on your shortlist.

Read our full Internxt cloud storage review.

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Internxt test results:
AttributesNotesRating
DesignAn intuitive interface that gives the user plenty of support⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useAn introductory guide offered straight away⭐⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceGood speeds even with encryption enabled⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacyA real strong point. Robust encryption offered here. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer supportEmail support on-hand 24/7⭐⭐⭐⭐
Additional featuresNothing of note, really
Time to upload 1GB4m24s - very fast⭐⭐⭐⭐
Time to download 1GB2m29s - very respectable ⭐⭐⭐
PlatformsPC, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android⭐⭐⭐⭐
Versions kept1 - "working on making that more competitive"⭐⭐
PriceFree plan may be a little misleading, but lots of options herel⭐⭐⭐⭐

Best for backups

Website screenshot for Backblaze

(Image credit: Backblaze)
The best cloud storage for backups

Specifications

Free tier: None
Storage size: Unlimited
Number of devices: 1 (Personal Plan)

Reasons to buy

+
No storage or file size limits 
+
Free for a year when purchased with ExpressVPN 
+
Easy to use 
+
Backblaze will send you up to 8TB of your data on a physical hard drive 

Reasons to avoid

-
Few features beyond backups 
-
Each account covers a single PC or Mac device only
-
No network drive syncing
Subscribe if:

✔️ You want unlimited cloud backup: For just $6 per TB per month, you get unlimited cloud backup so you can keep all the files you need.

✔️ You need straightforward operation: Everything is simple and clear - even if you need to recover your entire computer. 

✔️ Affordable pricing is important to you: Even before you commit, you can try Backblaze for free for 15 days without giving up any payment card information.

Don't subscribe if:

❌ You need fast backups: Backblaze isn’t particularly fast - although it does intentionally throttle its speeds to avoid user disruption - but this could be a problem for some.

❌ You need more than one device backed up: Backblaze works on a one-device-per-license approach. You can purchase multiple licenses, of course, but you won't receive a discount for doing so.

You want support for network drives: These aren't included, although you can back up external hard drives and portable SSDs.

Bottom line ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Backblaze is a great backup tool that is comprehensive and secure, working just as well for personal or business devices.

Want to know more?

Check out our in-depth Backblaze review to find out more about this popular platform.

Backblaze is a high-powered cloud backup service that provides unlimited storage with no file size limits for a very fair price.

Install the Backblaze desktop app and it immediately scans for important files, and begins uploading them. You're able to take manual control, if you like, but we found it simpler to let Backblaze handle everything automatically.

The initial transfer of data to the web can take a long time, but our tests found impressive upload speeds kept delays to a minimum. And on the download front, if you need your data in a hurry, Backblaze will ship up to 8TB to your door on a USB drive.

The focus on backups means there's no file syncing, no clever collaboration tools, and only the simplest of file-sharing options. You can only protect one computer per account, too, and network drives aren't supported.

If you're just looking for an ultra-simple high-capacity backup service, though, Backblaze is a must-see. The pricing model for its cloud storage service is simple: $6 per TB billed monthly, a fifth of the cost of Amazon Web Services. 

There's also a free 15-day trial, which you can access without having to hand over your financial details. After that, though, there's no free plan, however. 

The Backblaze interface is another strength of the platform. While the options are somewhat limited, there’s a real clear focus apparent when engaging with the user experience. 

This includes a useful file manager feature, which makes it easy to search and sort through the files you have stored in the platform. The interface is minimal, which is both a strength and a weakness - especially if you are used to some of Backblaze’s competitors that offer more advanced functionality. 

If you also need a VPN to protect yourself online, you can alternatively get Backblaze completely free for a year when you sign up for our #1 favorite, ExpressVPN (and you get three extra months of ExpressVPN protection, too).

Read our full Backblaze review.

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Backblaze test results:
AttributesNotesRating
DesignA straightforward design with clear navigation.⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useSimple and clear.⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceNot the quickest, possibly due to deliberate throttling⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacyEncryption and 2FA make this a strong point.⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer supportBackblaze operates a ticket system, with business-hour live chat, and additional paid support options