Cloud Storage Pricing - Great Deals in a Developing Market

| May 15, 2012

Until comparatively recently, cloud storage was the preserve of a handful of small companies for whom it was their core business. These companies, like DropBox and its ilk, have been doing well in a surprisingly empty pond. But it looks as though the good times for the independent companies are over, as big players have entered the marketplace.

Google Drive, Amazon Cloud Drive, and Microsoft SkyDrive are becoming the principle players in a market once the preserve of the (comparatively) little guy. As these heavyweight players step into the boat, you can be confident that it’s going to start to tip. This, in the short term, anyway, is likely to mean a bounty of choice and low costs for independent business people like you. In the long run, things will settle down to something more reasonable for the providers, but for now we can expect some pretty good deals.

Cloud Storage Deals to Help Your Business

We’ve already discussed how cloud computing can help your business and your people stay ahead of the curve, so let’s get down to the brass tacks—what’s it going to cost?

Microsoft SkyDrive

Microsoft’s offering is Microsoft SkyDrive. This service has been online since 2007 but has started to become a more serious player recently, with the increasing interest in storage options. Storage from Microsoft SkyDrive isn’t huge, but its maximum offering of 100GB is competitively priced at 50 cents per Gigabyte per year, with an additional 7GB of free space added. The sizes of storage offered with Microsoft SkyDrive are 20GB + 7GB free, 50GB + 7GB free, and 100GB + 7GB free. This can mean that you might end up paying for space that will lie empty.

Amazon Cloud Drive

Amazon is the next most established of the new players with their Amazon Cloud Drive service. Their fees shake out at the $1 per Gigabyte per year level. They’ve got any amount of space, but Amazon also offers their 3S service for high-volume users. This system’s charging structure is more complicated: there are fees for storage but also for operations, such as accessing data and copying from their cloud environment to your local disks. Fees other than for storage are very small, however, and unless you’re sending huge numbers of requests up and down, you’ll never feel them. If you do have oodles of data to store, their prices become steadily lower as your usage increases. In their heaviest usage bracket, the price is down to 44 cents per Gigabyte per year.

Amazon Cloud Drive suffers from the same inflexibility of storage sizes as Microsoft SkyDrive, with 20GB, 50GB, 100GB, 500GB, and 1,000GB offerings, making it increasingly likely you’ll be paying for more space than you actually use.

Google Drive

Google Drive is a newcomer to the field, and a long-awaited one at that. They’ve integrated their storage with Gmail, with Google Docs, with Picasa... all good stuff for the personal user, but perhaps not the most professional-looking option for a business customer. Also, their prices work out a little on the high side, starting at $1.20 per Gigabyte per year for the smallest, 25GB option. It does settle down to a more manageable 60 cents per Gigabyte per year after 100GB, though.

DropBox

Let’s not forget DropBox. They did more than anyone to make this new marketplace the vibrant and changing one it is today. You can be sure they know the business, but with their current pricing of $2 per Gigabyte per year, they’ll have a hard time staying afloat even with their loyalty program, which ensures extra free storage (up to 32GB) for account holders who manage to recruit new customers. The market will probably even out before too long, and with luck there will still be space in it for the original innovators like DropBox, but for now they look as if they’re going to have a hard time trying to hang onto that market share. We wish them well.

If you’ve got questions about cloud storage or any other myriad IT options for your business, give us a call.

At Infidati, we’ve got experts on hand every hour of every day, always standing ready to help you and your business. From database support to remote system management, we know how to give your business the competitive edge.