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Best Cloud Storage for iPhone

The Best Cloud Storage for iPhone & iPad in 2024: Back Up Your Apps and Photos

iPhone users have cloud-based storage services built into iCloud Drive. However, there are better options than iCloud Drive, as we will discuss below. We highlight several alternatives with great features, excellent security or stringent privacy. To help you decide, we list the best cloud storage for iPhone.

Jason StagnittoValentina BravoJasna Mishevska

Written by Jason Stagnitto (Writer)

Reviewed by Valentina Bravo (Editor)

Facts checked by Jasna Mishevska (Lead Fact-Checking Editor)

Last Updated: 2024-03-29T09:01:37+00:00

All our content is written fully by humans; we do not publish AI writing. Learn more here.

Key Takeaways: The best cloud storage services for iPhone and other iOS devices
  1. — The best overall cloud storage service for iPhone
  2. pCloud — Excellent security and privacy that’s great for photos and videos
  3. Icedrive — Great iOS app integration, along with a secure and private user design
  4. Dropbox — Strong collaboration tools with many third-party integrations
  5. Google Drive — Excellent affordability with ease of use and collaboration tools

Facts & Expert Analysis

  • iCloud’s Free 5GB: Although iCloud Drive starts you off with 5GB of free cloud storage, you’ll find that’s quickly eaten up if you take a lot of photos or videos.
  • An Alternative Service Is Better: With one of the options on this list, you’ll not only have more storage space, but better integration with other platforms and services.
  • What to Look For: For a pain-free iPhone cloud storage experience, you want a service that will easily upload from your camera and iCloud Drive, includes file sync and has strong security and privacy.
The Best Cloud Storage App for iPhone
1TB – Unlimited GB$6 / month

Anyone who uses an iPhone regularly likely has data taking up a lot of space. For iPhones without much storage, data management could be a problem. A cloud storage service stores your precious data and frees up space on your device. Fortunately, you can’t go wrong if you choose from the best cloud storage services. To help you choose, we focus on the best cloud storage for iPhone.

iPhone users are probably familiar with iCloud Drive as it’s a core feature across many of Apple’s devices. For features like advanced file sharing, collaboration or privacy, iCloud Drive isn’t the best option. Choosing one of the following cloud storage providers will ensure that you get the features, storage and security you need. 

  • 06/25/2022

    Updated’s plans and pricing information.

  • 05/18/2023

    Updated with new information regarding Icedrive’s zero-knowledge encryption.

  • 02/21/2024 Facts checked

    This article was rewritten to include updated features and pricing.

  • 03/29/2024

    Updated to reflect changes in Icedrive’s pricing plans and storage offers

Cloudwards Editor’s Choice: is our top cloud storage service choice for iPhone as it integrates well with the mobile app, is easy to use and provides excellent security and privacy. protects everything you store from your iPhone by using zero-knowledge encryption. You can easily upload photos from your camera or transfer photos over from iCloud.

How to Choose the Best Cloud Storage for iPhone

To choose the best cloud storage for iPhone, we looked at how well the mobile app integrates with the Apple device. The more functionality and interaction, the better the overall experience. Additionally, since we are looking at cloud storage, we also considered the following features:

  • File sync: When you add, remove or make changes, file sync keeps your data updated.
  • File sharing: File sharing lets you share files from your account with anyone.
  • Security: Security protects your data from cyberattacks while it’s stored on servers or transferred between devices.
  • Privacy: Privacy keeps your data secure from unauthorized access. 
  • Storage space: The more storage space you have, the more data you can store in the cloud.

The 5 Best Cloud Storage Services for iPhone Compared

Cloud App:Free StoragePriceSecurityEnd-to-End EncryptionCollaborationSharing
5GB$8 per month (one-year plan)
* Microsoft Office
10GB$99.99 (one-year plan)
10GB$71.88 (one-year plan)
2GB$9.99 per month (one-year plan)
Google Workspace
Microsoft 365
Native apps
App marketplace
15GB$19.99 (one-year plan)
Google Workspace
App marketplace
*Zero-knowledge encryption

1. — Best Cloud Storage for iPhone

sync iphone app
The cloud storage service works well for your iPhone data, including personal files.
1TB – Unlimited GB$6 / month


  • Zero-knowledge encryption
  • Excellent iPhone integration
  • Automatic camera uploads


  • Slower speeds

The iOS app makes file sharing and synchronization with your other devices easy. The app’s homepage shows your content, and clicking on the three dots next to a file or folder pulls up a menu with options that include sharing, copying or moving. A “plus” button at the bottom lets you create a new folder or document, and upload a file or image.

The “settings” menu gives users plenty of flexibility, with a standout option being camera choices. You can enable camera uploads, make it so uploads only happen on WiFi or allow background uploading, among other possibilities. Other options include adding a passcode, clearing cached files or managing active uploads. Hands-On Testing

Using on an iPhone is a simplified experience. Items are logically arranged, and the look and feel mixes’s style with iPhone functionality. The UI doesn’t feel dated compared to the web interface.

Another area where the iOS app shines is with previews. You can play videos, listen to music and view your images. There’s an option to edit photos, but it doesn’t do much. When you click on the “pencil” icon, no other options exist for changing your images. 

sync iphone app settings
Even with the free version, you can change how photos get uploaded to your account or set a passcode lock.

Notes From the Lab: Speed Test Results

↕️1st Test2nd TestAverage Speed

Speed isn’t where excels, as that is a typical trade-off for tight security and privacy. Uploads and downloads averaged over 14 minutes during our tests using 5GB of mixed data.

sync cta
Not many cloud storage services offer private encryption that protects an entire account.
Encryption Type:Protocols
Encryption at rest AES 256-bit
Encryption in transit TLS/SSL

Security and privacy are highlights for mainly due to zero-knowledge encryption that protects your entire account. Pricing & Value

The most affordable paid plan is the Solo Basic plan. It comes with 2TB of storage and costs $96 per year. All new plans include a 30-day money-back guarantee. Additionally, you can try the Solo Pro Professional plan — which has 6TB of data — free for 30 days.

To learn more, check out our review. You can create a free cloud storage account with 5GB to try out

  • 5GB
More plans
Pro Teams Standard
  • Price per user
  • 1TB
Pro Teams+ Unlimited
  • Price per user
  • Unlimited GB

2. pCloud — Best Cloud Storage for Multimedia

pcloud iphone app
pCloud’s iPhone app integrates seamlessly, giving you excellent online storage, great security features and quality file sharing services.
500GB – 10TB$4.17 / month
(save 24%) (All Plans)


  • Excellent iOS integration
  • Great file sharing
  • Real-time file sync


  • Poor collaboration
  • Private encryption costs extra

pCloud does a great job of making its iOS app feel like Apple designed it. It does more than just function as a cloud storage service. If the option is enabled, you can airdrop files to other Apple devices and print using WiFi. The sharing and export tools mirror what you see when performing the same functions using iOS apps.

Photos and videos are where the iPhone pCloud app truly shines. Videos have light editing features, with the main function being to crop and trim. Photos have similar functionality, with the ability to mark up or add text. Any changes you make to videos or photos instantly sync with your pCloud account.

pCloud Hands-On Testing

The iOS app is a breeze to use, with the same look and feel as the pCloud web interface. Navigation is simple and organized logically. Having the same “sharing” menu as other Apple apps makes it easy for iPhone users to download the app and begin using it immediately. 

There are a few customization options, and the “settings” tab is mainly informational. The most notable tool is the option to either upload all your photos and videos, or simply upload the newer ones starting from when you first enable the feature. If you paid for the encrypted folder, it has some specific settings of its own, including an option to reset it.

pcloud iphone app settings
pCloud has many settings in its iPhone app, including camera uploads, a passcode lock and Crypto folder settings.

Notes From the Lab: pCloud Speed Test Results

↕️1st Test2nd TestAverage Speed

pCloud is one of the fastest cloud storage services, averaging eight minutes for uploads and under seven minutes for downloads in our testing.

Notes From the Lab: pCloud Security Analysis

pcloud crypto
pCloud Crypto is a paid add-on that unlocks the encrypted folder on your account.
Encryption Type:Protocols
Encryption at rest AES 256-bit
Encryption in transit TLS/SSL

pCloud offers zero-knowledge encryption in the form of an encrypted folder. Every account has this folder. However, you’ll need to purchase pCloud Crypto — and a subscription as well, unless you’re a business user — to unlock this option.

pCloud Pricing & Value

pCloud has several choices for upgrading to a paid plan. The Premium 500GB plan costs $49.99, while the Premium Plus 2TB plan costs $99.99. pCloud also offers family plans, lifetime plans and business plans. New plans include a 10-day money-back guarantee.

You can try pCloud with 2GB of free cloud storage, and you can expand this amount to 10GB by completing a few microtasks. We cover pricing in our pCloud pricing guide and conduct a full exploration of the service in our pCloud review.

3. Icedrive — Best Cloud Storage for Ease of Use

Icedrive iphone app
Icedrive makes it easy to access files and has great file syncing for Apple users.
100GB – 3TB$2.99 / month
(save 40%) (All Plans)


  • Strong security & privacy
  • Affordable plans
  • Clean UI


  • Limited customization
  • Paid zero-knowledge security

Icedrive’s iPhone app has many of the same features and functions as the web interface. You can share any folder or file by touching the three-dot menu. Options include creating a public link or sharing directly via email. When using an email address, a toggle switch is available to give recipients “editor” access.

There are several tabs, including one for accessing the encrypted folder if you paid for a plan. You can review any shared links you created, or review folders or files you identified as favorites. The “more” tab has options to view recent activity, manage deleted files, access settings or get help.

Icedrive Hands-On Testing

Using the Icedrive app on iPhone is a painless experience as your content is logically arranged on the main page. You can organize your data by a list or grid, and you can move items around by touching the “checkbox” option in the upper-right corner.

The Icedrive app’s settings are limited. You can only make changes related to photo uploads; you can’t alter anything else about the app or your account. Otherwise, it functions as expected. You can upload photos and videos, encrypt them (if you have a paid plan) and auto-organize them by date. Other choices involve converting images to JPEGs and including live photos.

icedrive iphone app settings
Managing how photos are uploaded from your iPhone is the primary functionality within the Icedrive settings.

Notes From the Lab: Icedrive Speed Test Results

↕️1st Test2nd TestAverage Speed

Icedrive’s speeds are remarkably fast, considering its stringent encryption. We easily uploaded and downloaded 5GB of mixed data using Icedrive.

icedrive cloud features
Icedrive has several security features, including Twofish
encryption and two-factor authentication.
Encryption Type:Protocols
Encryption at rest Twofish
Encryption in transit TLS/SSL

Icedrive uses the Twofish encryption algorithm instead of the more common AES 256-bit encryption. Technically, Twofish is the more secure option. However, AES 256-bit is in no danger of being hacked.

Icedrive Pricing & Value

Icedrive offers several paid plans. If you upgrade from your iPhone, you can select the Lite plan, which has 100GB of storage for $47.88 per year. Pro I’s one-year plan costs $71.88 for 1TB of storage. Icedrive also offers two-year plans, and every plan includes a 14-day money-back guarantee.

Icedrive’s cloud storage service has 10GB of free space, so it’s easy to take it for a spin. Read more about its features in our Icedrive review.

  • Bandwidth limit: 50GB
  • 10GB
More plans
Lifetime (Add On) Stack 100
  • Additional 128GB storage for users who purchased the Lifetime Plan
  • 128GB
Lifetime (Add On) Stack 500
  • Additional 512GB storage for users who purchased the Lifetime Plan
  • 512GB

4. Dropbox — Best Cloud Storage for Collaboration

dropbox iphone app
Dropbox’s homepage for iPhone has many choices and additional features like starred files, viewed links and shared items.
2TB – 5TB$9.99 / month
(save 16%) (All Plans)


  • Strong iOS integration
  • Great cloud features
  • Excellent collaboration


  • No zero-knowledge security
  • Limited free storage

Dropbox’s iPhone app integrates well with the flagship Apple device, making it easy to upload documents, photos or videos. You can send files to your Dropbox account outside of the app, which is an option on other iPhone apps like Notes or Photos. In the Messages app, you can send files to others using Dropbox without leaving the app.

In addition to uploading or creating new files, including those from Dropbox Paper or Microsoft 365, you can scan a document or record audio while in the app. Changes you make sync seamlessly to your Dropbox account, letting you move between devices with little hassle. Dropbox also creates a tab in the Files app, making it easier to sync your data using an iPhone.

Dropbox Hands-On Testing

When you open the Dropbox app for iPhone, it’s clear that a lot is happening. The “home” menu is full of everything but your data. To work with the files in your account, touch the “files” tab at the bottom of the screen.

The functionality of the app is noticeably robust. You can manage devices beyond your iPhone, connect a computer or handle offline files. Camera uploads let you include videos, save photos in JPEG format or choose which images to store.

dropbox iphone app settings
Dropbox’s “settings” tab in the iPhone app contains a lot of information and options to manage your account.

Notes From the Lab: Dropbox Speed Test Results

↕️1st Test2nd TestAverage Speed

Dropbox has no issues in the speed department — it averages eight-minute uploads and just over seven-minute downloads. During our testing, the CPU loads were minimal, and Dropbox quickly got up to top speed.

dropbox boxcryptor
Dropbox purchased Boxcryptor, but zero-knowledge encryption
is currently only planned for business account holders.

Notes From the Lab: Dropbox Security Analysis

Encryption Type:Protocols
Encryption at rest AES 256-bit
Encryption in transit TLS/SSL

Dropbox uses strong security measures to protect your data. However, despite the recent purchase of Boxcryptor, a third-party encryption software, Dropbox still doesn’t offer zero-knowledge encryption.

Dropbox Pricing & Value

Dropbox’s paid plans start at $9.99 monthly when billed annually and come with 2TB of storage. The Standard plan costs $15 per user per month and has 5TB of shared storage. Other Dropbox plans increase in size and price depending on your needs. Dropbox does not offer a money-back guarantee.

Although Dropbox is one of the more popular cloud storage services, it has a meager 2GB of free storage space. Check out our Dropbox pricing guide if you plan to upgrade your account, or see our Dropbox review to learn more about the service. 

  • 1 user
  • 2GB
More plans
Dropbox Essentials (Formerly Dropbox One)
  • 1 user Signature requests and eSignature templates
  • 3TB
Dropbox Business Standard
  • 3 users minimum
  • 5TB
Dropbox Business Advanced
  • 3 users minimum
Dropbox Enterprise

    5. Google Drive — Best Cloud Storage for Affordability

    google drive iphone app
    Google Drive is one of the more popular cloud storage services, although the iPhone app provides a limited experience.
    100GB – 2TB$1.67 / month
    (save 16%) (All Plans)


    • Google Workspace integrated
    • Affordable paid plans
    • 15GB free storage


    • No private encryption
    • Poor privacy track record

    The Google Drive app for iPhone integrates nicely but lacks some features that its competitors have. Noticeably absent is any relevant photo integration, mainly because Google Photos is its dedicated standalone app for images. Even the “camera” icon on the iPhone app is designed for scanning documents rather than taking pictures.

    You can upload, create and edit files like Google Docs from your device. Options include adding comments or searching for keywords. Opening other file types, like Excel or PowerPoint, allows you to edit in the respective Google app. Touching the three dots next to a file opens a menu with options to share it, manage its access or make it available for offline use.

    Google Drive Hands-On Testing

    The Google Drive app for iPhone could be more visually appealing. Most tabs show your data, and there are very few graphics, as Google tries to stay out of your way. Anyone familiar with Google Drive will feel at home in the iPhone mobile app. 

    The device settings lack any significant options. You can set up face ID to unlock the app, manage your backups (if you’ve configured that option) or make Google your default app for things like email or browsing. Google doesn’t want you messing with the app’s functionality on iPhone.

    google drive iphone settings
    Although the Google Drive iPhone app has seamless access to your data, you can’t make any significant changes in the “settings” tab.

    Notes From the Lab: Google Drive Speed Test Results

    ↕️1st Test2nd TestAverage Speed

    Google has fast speeds for both uploads and downloads, quickly getting to max speed with minimal CPU impacts.

    Notes From the Lab: Google Drive Security Analysis

    google drive security
    Google has excellent security measures to protect your data,
    but a poor track record when it comes to privacy.
    Encryption Type:Protocols
    Encryption at rest AES 256-bit
    Encryption in transit TLS/SSL

    Google protects your data well with AES 256-bit encryption and TLS/SSL encryption protocols. However, it needs a better privacy record as it collects data on how you use Google products and services.

    Google Drive Pricing & Value

    Google has a handful of Google One plans if you want to purchase additional cloud storage space. The Basic plan has 100GB and costs $1.99 per month, or $19.99 annually. The Premium 2TB plan costs $99.99 per year and includes Google Workspace premium features. Google does not offer a money-back guarantee.

    New Google accounts come with 15GB of free storage space, among the most generous options. Check out our best free cloud storage for more alternatives. Our Google Drive review covers the service in greater detail.

    Why We Don’t Recommend Apple iCloud Drive on iPhone

    iPhone users may have read this article and wondered why we didn’t include iCloud Drive, which is Apple’s built-in cloud storage option that comes on every device. To its credit, iCloud Drive works seamlessly with Apple products, is easy to use and offers affordable upgrade plans. You can check out our iCloud Drive review for more information.

    The main reason we can’t recommend iCloud Drive is that it pales in comparison to the cloud storage providers in the above list. It has far fewer features and limited file sharing, and it isn’t a great option for anyone who needs better privacy or collaboration tools. 

    iCloud Drive has strong security features but uses AES 128-bit encryption, which is technically less secure than those that use AES 256-bit encryption. Privacy measures have improved since the infamous photo leak incident in 2014. However, Apple still collects data on you and shares some of it with third-party entities. 

    Final Thoughts

    Every iPhone comes with iCloud Drive preinstalled. However, there are better options to support your cloud storage needs. We give that nod to, which we consider to be the best cloud storage option. Other great choices are pCloud, Icedrive, Dropbox and Google Drive. Choosing any of these providers will give you a great cloud storage service.

    Is iCloud Drive enough to meet your needs? If not, have you used one of the cloud storage services in this list? What is your choice as the best cloud storage for iPhone? Let us know in the comments section below. Thanks for reading our article.

    FAQ: Best Cloud Storage for iPhone

    • Yes, if you need more than the 5GB of free storage space that comes with iCloud Drive.

    • is an excellent cloud storage alternative for iPhone. It has great features, excellent security and zero-knowledge encryption that protects your entire account.

    • is the best cloud storage choice for iOS devices. It is a secure, private and affordable option.

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