iCloud vs Google Drive: Advantages and Disadvantages

icloud vs google drive

Have you been looking to compare iCloud vs Google Drive? Sit back, grab a chair and read.

Today, iCloud and Google Drive are the most popular cloud storage systems. We can attribute this trend to the massive presence of both cloud storage services on Android or iOS platforms respectively. Also, with both systems, users can reach their files from various devices in cases of hardware loss or failure.

But both cloud storages show significant differences when it comes to issues such as free storage, availability and overall convenience. Under different subheadings, we will show you ways both platforms perform against each other.

Availability on Various Platforms

First, users can access iCloud as the default cloud storage on OS and Mac OS. But it’s not limited to Apple products; Window users can install iCloud for Windows and still have access to their files.

However, Apple does not offer Android devices an iCloud mobile app. But you can access iCloud services via a web app. This version (which works better on PC browsers) allows you to login in and manage your files with iCloud.

Conversely, Google Drive works across all platforms including Android (pre-installed) Windows, iOS or macOS. Furthermore, Google Drive has mobile versions of both apps which you can get on either the Play or App Store. While PCs need the backup and sync client before they can use the service.

With Google Drive, you can reach your files from everywhere via its streamlined apps. Besides, the presence of third-party apps for this service, allows PC users to have a better user experience when compared to iCloud’s web version.

Serviceability and Ease of Use

By default, iCloud comes as an integral part of iOS or macOS devices. This means that you handle your files with the File app or Finder. Besides, if the iCloud Photo Library option is activated, your videos and pictures will be accessible via Apple devices with the use of the Photo app.

If you use a Window PC, iCloud comes with some issues. For one, you might end up with a flawed photo library or long sync times. This comes after scaling through the complicated process of installing an iCloud sync client. And if your device runs on Android, your iCloud files become inaccessible as Google’s mobile platform is not supported in any way.

Concerning Google Drive, it comes out of the box on Android devices or available for download on Google Play. It also has the ability to back up your data on the cloud.

Also, Google Drive has an iOS version which provides Apple consumers the means to access and upload files to the cloud. They can even use File apps to manage cloud service. We want to add that with Google Drive on both platforms; you can upload apps from within the app itself.

On PCs, you can depend on the Backup and Sync client to keep your Google Drive cloud storage and custom local folder in sync. Besides, the Backup and Sync feature performs well on both Windows or macOS, even if they are not “native.”

Ultimately, Google Drive comes as a convenient option due to its wide availability and seamless syncing features.

iCloud vs Google DriveWeb Apps

With a PC, you can gain access to your files on iCloud on iCloud.com. The web app allows you to manage, upload, share and view your files after login. This service is vital on Windows devices if the iCloud sync client performs below expectation.

Likewise, the iCloud web app offers PC users access to the iWork productivity suite. Using this feature, documents can be created and edited within the browser.

Finally, the web app performs well, but it has a significant drawback- it does not support touchpad drag gesture or allow the selection of multiple items with a single mouse. This issue comes as a nightmare to file management.

Google Drive has a web app which enables you to manage files and folders from any browser. The service even offers the use of Google’s productivity suite which serves as a better alternative to iWork due to its cloud-based features.

The massive support for third-party apps and add-ons makes Google Drive an outstanding cloud storage service. Do you want to convert a video file or extract a zip file? There’s no problem as you have various apps for any task you have at hand.

Not to mention the ease of using the Google Drive web app especially when you use the Google Drive web app as you are permanently signed in to your Google Account.

Google Photos vs My Photo Stream

Although you can manually upload photos and videos to Google Drive, Google Photos stands as a better option. Even if both services work together, the latter has an exciting surprise.

Try using the High-Quality mode to save your videos and photos. You will discover that they do not consume storage which is a good thing as substantial multimedia content will not cause any issues. While your materials are compressed to other sizes, the drop in visual quality will not disturb regular usage.

Unlike Google Photos, iCloud Photo Library syncs your multimedia library across all platforms including Windows. The storage service also enables you to switch to My Photo Stream which allows the syncing of 1,000 images at a time while Google allows unlimited downloads.

Also, My PhotoStream erases stored photographs from iCloud after 30 days. You should note that this backup method should be used as a last option, especially when you have less space on the cloud.

iCloud Vs Google DriveFree Storage

Another noticeable difference between cloud storage services is the size of free storage. Apple’s iCloud offers a scanty 5GB which can only take a few high-resolution files. While Google Drive provides cloud storage of 15GB with which you can save vast amounts of multimedia files and documents.

iCloud vs Google DrivePricing Tiers

iCloud and Google Drive offer additional storage spaces at prices based on cost per GB. For instance, iClouds has 50GB for $1.99/mo while Google Drive offers 100GB at $1.99/mo. If you observe, you will discover that iCloud’s basic plan is cheaper especially if you do not require storage of over 50GB.

Other storage tiers on both services include 10TB, 20TB, and 30TB.

iCloud vs Google DriveFinal Thoughts

Google Drive stands as a better option because it works on significant platforms and even offers a larger storage space than iCloud. It also serves as the perfect solution to upload photos and videos with the help of Google Photos.


Posted by Abiodun Adewusi

Abiodun Adewusi is a freelance writer who lives in Nigeria. As a writer, he is passionate about providing content on technology helping people keep up with the latest trends. You can see some of his work on Medium and Ezine.

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