Devices tend to have a fair amount of internal storage within them, but with apps becoming bigger and more powerful, and with more access to movies and music, you can use a fair amount of your phone's internal storage fairly quickly. Although some phones have room for a micro SD card, where you can interchange between different cards and fill them with media, plenty of phones and tablets don't have that capability, and must instead rely on other ways of storing and accessing their files. There is another way, though...
Cloud storage apps allow you to store your files in a virtual cloud, giving you access to them whenever you need them, without them clogging up your device's internal storage. Most files can be uploaded to the cloud, including movies, music and documents, and then downloaded directly on to your device. Whether you're just getting started with using cloud storage apps, or have several accounts with various apps, here are ten things you need to know about them.
1. Instantly upload your files
One of the best features of cloud storage apps like Dropbox is the instant upload feature. When this feature is enabled, any photo you take, or media file you add to your device will automatically upload to your cloud storage account. Any files that are instantly uploaded will also appear on any other device you have got associated with your cloud account.
2. Plenty of choice
If you take a look through the mine field that is the Play store, you'll find the selection of cloud-based storage apps quite phenomenal. More of the well-known apps, such as Google Drive and Box allow for any file type to be uploaded to them. Whereas apps such as Mozy lean towards the uploading of media files. There are so many to choose from so download several and see which one takes your fancy.
3. Finding the right package
Most cloud storage apps come with some sort of free storage for you to use. In this instance you might as well sign up for the service and start using your free storage. Additional storage can then be bought in different packaged deals. Both Google Drive and Dropbox offer highly competitive prices for extra storage to use on their servers.
4. Encrypt your cloud
If protecting your files is of paramount importance to you, then you might want to take a look at encrypting your files and how they're shared within the cloud. Apps like Spideroak use an encrypted cloud backup service that lets you choose the one you want to send to the cloud before accessing them across other devices.
5. Simplicity is key
Navigating these apps is a rather simple process, and most come with some sort of basic tutorial to help you get started. Uploading files is an easy process, and you can go to individual files on your device, hit the Share button and add them to your cloud storage app that way. Their function and simplicity to use are two of the main reasons why cloud storage apps are becoming so popular.
6. Stream your media
Both Play Music and Play Movies offer a slightly unique form of cloud storage, by allowing their users to rent movies and watch them directly on the cloud. This means that users won't need to add these movies to their phone's internal storage, and can save themselves the time it takes to download a movie.
7. From phone to desktop
Cloud storage works as a great way of sharing your files between your phone and desktop computer. With apps like Dropbox, any time you upload a file, it'll also appear on any other electrical hardware that you also have the Dropbox service installed on. One of the best uses of this feature is being able to transfer any work files and documents from your work computer to your phone for you to edit in your own time.
8. Manage multiple services
If you sign up for several cloud storage apps, it can be hard keeping track of which files you've uploaded to specific apps. If you need help managing your various accounts then you may benefit from the Otixo service. Through this, you can connect to all of your cloud apps and drag files between them, helping you keep tabs on what files have gone where.
9. Access a PC remotely
Apps like SkyDrive and SugarSync allow you to remotely connect to your PC. When installed, and authorised, you'll be able to access your PC's file system via the app's interface. Although it can be a bit clumsy to use, having access to your desktop files 24 hours a day is a massive help.
10. Integrating with apps
Plenty of apps on the Play store are able to integrate with other apps and files on your phone. Pictures you edit within Pixlr-O-Matic and Instagram can be instantly uploaded to several cloud storage apps. Similarly, any documents you create within Quickoffice, Kingsoftand Documents To Go can also be added to your cloud storage. Google Docs and Google Drive are also examples of this feature.