Apple iCloud Drive vs DropBox vs Goolge Drive: How Apple's iCloud Drive is Different

By @peevesky on
Apple CEO Tim Cook Departs The Stage Following His Keynote Address
Apple CEO Tim Cook departs the stage following his keynote address at the Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco, California, June 2, 2014. Reuters

Steve Jobs once promised to kill Dropbox - it did not happen before but it appears to be happening now. Apple's iCloud Drive received a loud response upon its announcement during the Worldwide Developers Conference last week. According to the announcement, the company has revamped and transformed its iCloud service to compete against similar providers like Dropbox and Google's Drive. Apple's move to transform iCloud Drive stems back from Steve Jobs' vision of turning it into formidable opponent against Dropbox. 

According to Know Your Mobile, people can consider the iCloud as Apple's black sheep. Despite the success of Apple's products, iCloud remains a challenge. Developers also had a difficult time working with the cloud-based storage as many reported doing extra coding time to execute something. Some developers even lose data while coding. 

Fortunately, the iOS 8 will introduce major changes to iCloud through the iCloud Drive. Before delving into the specifics of Apple's tweak, it is also necessary to check which features Apple decided to keep. Users can still log in to the iCloud Drive using their previous iCloud email. The platform will also keep a user's bookmark and sync password keychains, calendars and contacts across Apple's devices. 

Similarities end there as Apple pushes for drastic changes on the cloud-based storage. Before, iCloud offers a unique and limited way of storing and opening files. It also has a different orientation from other cloud-based options unlike Dropbox which only serves as the extension of the user's file system. 

Apple's iCloud Drive now borrows Dropbox entirely. Apple has also included a Mac Finder within the OS X Yosemite on the side of the drive. Users can simply drag files or content to the folder and it will upload automatically. They can also access the files through other synced Apple devices. For instance, files upload via MacBook can now be accessed through the iMac so long as the folder is synced. 

The storage system lets people create folders within folders mimicking the file structure people have been used to. However, that is iCloud on Mac - iCloud on iOS is different. Apple has not included the iCloud Drive directly on the iPhone and the iPad. Instead, people can access the storage through apps with iCloud Drive support. In this manner, the platform works similarly to the old Documents function under the iOS iCloud. What is new in this format is that people can open the iCloud Drive through an app and they will see a similar file structure as with Mac. 

While it has become a simple and more functional platform, analysts believe that Apple has to fix its pricing if it really wants to go head to head with Dropbox and Google Drive. It also has to offer more storage options. In the new iCloud Drive, people can get 5GB of storage free while 20GB costs $11.88. This is more expensive than Google Drive which offers free storage up to 15GB and only $23.88 for 100GB storage space. Dropbox offers up to 5GB free and $99 for 100GB. Apple may be able to compete with this because it offers 200GB for $47.88.

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