Best Cloud Storage for Android

With 76.03 percent market share, Android is the most popular mobile operating system in the world. It’s no surprise then that all services on our best cloud storage comparison list work on it. That’s fortunate because it makes it easier to pick the best cloud storage for Android.

It’s good to use a cloud storage service on your phone because you can rely on it to save your photos and videos. Plus, you can use it to move your most important files to the cloud. That’s helpful if someone steals your phone or you damage or lose it.

You might be looking for cloud backup which is different from cloud storage. If that’s the case, consult our best online backup for mobile article. If you’re looking for an overview of cloud storage services, read our best cloud storage guide and our best cloud storage reviews.

Before we start with the list, we’re going to define the criteria we’ve used to make it.

Best Cloud Storage for Android 2019

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What Makes Cloud Storage the Best for Android

We’re going to look at how easy it is to use the service on Android and what mobile features are available. They might include access to files while you’re offline, automatic photo and video upload, the ability to free space on your device and passcode lock, which protects access to your account, and more.

Next, we’ll take a look at the pricing model. It’s best if it has plans that offer a lot of storage space for cheap. If a service has several plans that’ll make it easier to find one that suits your storage needs. If you need a lot of space, though, read our best unlimited online storage providers guide.

It doesn’t matter how much space you have unless your files in the cloud benefit from strong security. That depends on file encryption, the protocols that protect your files in transit, how secure the data centers are and more. It’s best to have zero-knowledge encryption because it ensures the privacy of your files.

An easy way to share your files is important, too, because you’re probably going to share some of them. We’re going to look at what content control options — expiry dates, password protection and permissions — you can set up for your shares. A view that tells you what you’ve shared and with whom is another helpful feature.

Now that we’ve got our criteria out of the way, we can move on to our top pick, Sync.com.

Best Cloud Storage for Android: Sync.com

Sync.com is based in Canada and has a reputation for strong security and privacy. It has a useful Android client to help users access and upload files on the go.

The app is minimal and intuitive. The “add” button in the bottom right corner lets you upload a file or create a folder and the menu in the top left corner lets you access features and settings, including the option to view your “Vault.”

Vault is a cloud-only folder that you can upload to without synchronizing files to your other devices. Link options show your shared links and the settings let you tweak them for the app. From the settings, you can enable photo and video uploads. 

You can upload your existing photos and videos or only new media. Plus, you can organize your photos, which moves images from the camera upload to separate folders based on the month they were created. You can select files for offline access, too. One missing feature is the ability to take a photo and upload it directly to the cloud.

Overall, the app is user-friendly and includes the necessary features alongside the uncommon and useful Vault feature.

Sync.com has competitive prices. Before you subscribe, though, you can use Sync Starter, which provides 5GB of free storage, to test it. After you register you can complete several steps to get 1GB of bonus storage, too. Plus, you get another gigabyte for every friend you refer up to 20GB.

If you find that you like the service, you can subscribe to one of the two plans for personal users: Personal Pro 500GB or Personal Pro 2TB. The first costs $49 a year and the second costs $96 a year. Those are among the best-value deals on the cloud storage market. The only drawback to Sync.com’s plans is that you have to pay for the year in advance.

Other Reasons We Like Sync.com 

Sync.com uses AES 256-bit encryption to scramble your data at rest and the TLS protocol to protect files during transfer. Sync.com also provides private encryption to protect your privacy. It uses RAID architecture to prevent file loss as a result of malfunctions. Plus, it’s SOC 1-certified.

Because of those security features, Sync.com is at the top of our most secure cloud storage and best zero-knowledge cloud services lists. Note that if you forget your password, Sync.com won’t be able to reset it for you. The best password managers can help you save your password, though.

Sharing from your smartphone starts with the three dots associated with a folder or a file. If you want to share a folder, you can make it a shared folder, which lets you set permissions and add an optional message. If you share it as a link, you can protect the link with a password. 

Sync.com lets you share upload links, too, allowing others to upload content to your storage space. For an overview of what you’ve shared, you can access the “links” feature from the menu. If you want to learn more about Sync.com, consult our Sync.com review.

We’ve placed Sync.com first because of its good ease of use on mobile, competitive pricing plans, strong security, including zero-knowledge encryption, and the option to set up a password for link shares.

Pros:

  • Strong security
  • Zero-knowledge
  • Great value

Cons:

  • No monthly plans
  • Can’t upload photos taken directly to cloud
Starts from $ 408 per month for 500 GB
Free plan available

pCloud

pCloud is a Switzerland-based service that launched in 2013. It ranks near the top of our best cloud storage comparison list and features a capable Android app.

It follows the same model that most cloud storage services follow. The main view shows your files in a list or grid view and an “add” button that lets you upload a file, create a folder or take a photo and upload it directly. The left side of the main view has the menu button.

pCloud adds more flavor to it, though, including a search bar at the top and icons in the menu bar that let you quickly browse documents, music, videos and photos. From the menu, you can also access your offline files, settings, notifications and the pCloud Crypto folder, which is an add-on that protects your files with private encryption.

The settings menu lets you create a passcode lock, free device storage by deleting all files that you’ve uploaded to pCloud and enable automatic upload. You can tweak the automatic upload feature to upload photos, videos or both. Plus, you can set it to upload all files or only new ones. If you’re on a limited plan, you can disable uploading when you’re using mobile data.

You don’t have to pay to test the Android app because pCloud has a free plan. It gives you up to 10GB of storage space and 1GB per friend you refer up to 20GB. That’s a solid deal, and it helped pCloud make our best cloud companies with large free plans list.

Personal users can choose between two plans: Premium 500GB and Premium Plus 2TB. Premium 500GB is $4.99 per month and Premium Plus 2TB is $9.99 per month. If you pay for a year in advance, the prices come down to $47.88 and $95.88, respectively.

If pCloud solves your problems and you’d like to use it for the long term, consider buying a lifetime subscription. It’ll save you money in the end. With that pricing scheme, Premium 500GB is $175 and Premium 2TB is $350.

Other Reasons We Like pCloud

pCloud uses AES 256-bit encryption to protect your files at rest and the TLS protocol to secure them in transit. After your files reach pCloud’s data center, they’re replicated across at least five servers.

Private encryption is available, but only if you buy the Crypto add-on for $3.99 a month. Files that you put in the Crypto folder will only be accessible to you because they’ll be secured with a password that only you know. Because of that, pCloud won’t be able to reset your password if you lose it. 

Another restriction of the Crypto folder is that you can’t share the files in it. You can share files by creating a download link and sending it via email, social media apps and more. The only drawback is that you can’t protect the link with a password.

We had to split hairs between pCloud and Sync.com, and we ended up placing pCloud in second place because it doesn’t provide as much security as Sync.com. That’s most obvious in its paid private encryption and lack of protection for shared links on mobile. That said, pCloud has excellent premium plans and user experience. Learn more about it in our pCloud review.

Pros:

  • Excellent value
  • Great user-experience
  • Private encryption
  • Upload link

Cons:

  • Private encryption is a paid add-on
  • No password protection for links on mobile
Starts from $ 399 per month for 500 GB
Free plan available Save 20 %

MEGA

MEGA is one of the most controversial cloud storage companies because it was founded by the infamous Kim Dotcom in 2013. He’s no longer associated with it, though, and the service has plenty of upsides, including a sleek Android app.

It’s similar to other cloud storage apps, but it doesn’t follow the common model exactly and has a rare feature. The search bar at the top lets you find files faster, while the bottom menu lets you access your cloud, offline and shared files. Plus, you can use it to take a photo and upload it directly to the cloud or enter chat.

Integrated chat isn’t something you see every day with cloud storage services. MEGA’s implementation is also encrypted to ensure your privacy. It’s a cool addition, but its usefulness is questionable considering the many proprietary solutions on the market.

The menu on the left lets you access your account, contacts, notifications and settings. From the settings, you can enable PIN lock, tweak automatic upload for photos and videos, enable or disable two-factor authentication, adjust chat options, enable or disable versioning, which is rare on mobile, and more.

You won’t have issues using MEGA’s Android app because it’s fast, clear and intuitive.

MEGA has several plans that you can subscribe to. The first plan, PRO LITE, is $5.69 per month for 200GB of storage space and 1TB of data transfer. PRO I is $11.20 per month and gives you 1TB of storage and 2TB of data transfer. You have to pay $22.41 per month for the PRO II plan, which provides 4TB of storage and 8TB of data transfer.

The PRO III plan is $33.62 per month and offers 8TB of storage space and 16TB of data transfer. If you pay for a year in advance, you get two months for free. In addition to that deal, MEGA provides a free plan that initially offers 50GB of free space, but 35GB expire after a while.

Other Reasons We Like MEGA

MEGA doesn’t use AES 256-bit encryption like the most secure cloud storage services. Instead, it uses AES 128-bit encryption to scramble your files at rest. It’s not as strong, but it has never been cracked as far as anyone knows. The encryption is private, so you don’t have to worry about the privacy of your files. The TLS protocol will protect files during transfer.

You can share your files by generating a link. By default, links are zero-knowledge, which means they’re protected with a private key. When you share, you can send a link with or without a key or you can just send the key for that share. Paid subscriptions let you add expiry dates and passwords to your links, too.

You can share folders the same way as links or invite your contacts to them. If you want to learn more about MEGA’s sharing, features and generous free plan, read our MEGA review.

Pros:

  • Private encryption
  • Encrypted link sharing
  • New photo upload

Cons:

  • Prices could be better
  • Can only share folders with MEGA users
  • No permissions when sharing folders
Starts from $ 569 per month for 200 GB
Free plan available

Icedrive

Icedrive launched in January 2019. It’s a new service, so it’s not surprising that it lacks staple features, but that doesn’t detract much from its Android client.

The app is easy to use, clear and intuitive. It uses the same layout as most cloud storage services. The default view shows your files and folders, while the “add” button lets you quickly upload data, create a folder or take a photo and upload it directly to the cloud.

You can use the menu on the left to navigate files shared with you, encrypted storage, recent files, favorites, trash, backup and settings. The backup data feature lets you backup your camera images and videos, documents and audio files. It can also automatically organize them in the cloud for you.

The settings menu lets you enable auto-upload for camera photos, other images, videos, audio files and documents. Plus, you can add a security PIN and enable or disable notifications.

If you want to access files offline, you need to enter the menu associated with each file and select “make available offline.”

Icedrive has three subscription plans. The first is Lite, which provides 150GB of storage space and 250GB of monthly bandwidth. It’s $19.99 for a year. Pro is $4.99 per month or $49.99 per year, and it gives you 1TB of storage and 2TB of monthly bandwidth. 

The final plan is Pro+, which provides 5TB of storage space and 8TB of monthly bandwidth. It’s $17.99 per month or $179.99 with the yearly discount. If you’re not sure about Icedrive you can use its free 10GB plan to test it before subscribing.

Other Reasons We Like Icedrive

Icedrive uses the Twofish algorithm, which isn’t the common Rijndael AES, but it isn’t weak, either. Its strength largely depends on how good Icedrive’s implementation of it is. It uses the same key length as AES 256-bit. The encryption is private, too. The TLS/SSL protocol will protect your files in transit.

You can share files and folders by sending an invite via email or creating a public link. If you create a public link, you can protect your share with a password. There’s an option to see files shared with you, but you can’t see what you’ve shared. 

When you share a folder, there’s no indication that it has been shared, though, and when you tap “share,” it says it isn’t shared with anybody.

Icedrive’s sharing features might be clunky, but it has plans with competitive prices and a free plan that offers 10GB of storage space. You can read more about it in our Icedrive review.

Pros:

  • Great value
  • Private encryption
  • Mobile data backup

Cons:

  • Lacks folder permissions when sharing
  • Clunky link sharing
Starts from $ 167 per month for 150 GB

Microsoft OneDrive

Microsoft OneDrive stands with Google Drive and Dropbox as one of the most popular cloud storage services. It’s a good choice for Android users.

The Android app’s main view feels constrained because there are several buttons in the upper right corner. The “add,” “upgrade” and “search” buttons are there The lower right corner has a button that lets you scan and upload content.

You can do the same from the “add” button. Plus you can create Word, PowerPoint and Excel files. The menu on the bottom lets you see your files, recent files, shared content, photos and account menu. From the account menu, you can make files available offline and access settings.

The settings menu lets you add a passcode lock, tweak camera upload and more. The app was slow to load and crashed once while we were using it. Still, the overall user experience was enjoyable.

To get the most out of OneDrive, you need to subscribe to one of its three premium plans. The 50GB plan is only $1.99 per month. If you need more storage, you can get 1TB when you subscribe to the Office 365 Personal plan. It’s $6.99 a month or $69.99 if you pay for the year.

Office 365 Home is a great offer if you need to accommodate multiple users. It gives access to six users, and each gets 1TB of storage space. It’s $9.99 a month or $99.99 per year.

Other Reasons We Like OneDrive

OneDrive uses at-rest encryption with two elements: BitLocker disk-level encryption and per-file encryption of customer content. The level of encryption is AES 256-bit. Plus, OneDrive uses the TLS protocol to secure files during transfer. There’s no private encryption, though. 

Office 365 plans can also detect ransomware attacks and help you restore your files in OneDrive using the “files restore” feature. When OneDrive detects a ransomware attack, it’ll alert you via email, mobile or desktop notification, then guide you through the rest of the recovery process.

You can share files and folders as links, which you can set to expire if you’re a premium user. Plus, you can set “can edit” or “can view” permissions. You can also share with people by sending them an invitation via email. For a complete overview of OneDrive’s features and family plan, read our OneDrive review.

Pros:

  • Great family plan
  • Office 365

Cons:

  • Android app feels cluttered
  • No zero-knowledge encryption
  • Android app isn’t stable
Starts from $ 199 per month for 50 GB
Free plan available

Final Thoughts

All the services on this list are great for Android, but Sync.com stands out thanks to its great value, good ease of use, strong security, which includes private encryption and the option to set a password for link shares. 

pCloud might be a better option for those who value ease of use over security. MEGA and Icedrive are great thanks to their free plans. OneDrive is cluttered and less stable, so its last on the list.

What do you think about our choices? Do you use another service on your smartphone? Let us know in the comments below. Thank you for reading.

Starts from $ 408 per month for 500 GB
Free plan available
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