Key Takeaways: Cloud Storage for Large Files
- Sync.com is the best cloud storage service for large files, as it has private encryption for an entire account, does not place a limit on file sizes and offers a plan with unlimited cloud storage.
- pCloud also doesn’t limit file size, and Icedrive supports files up to 100TB.
- MEGA has unlimited file size but has stringent transfer quota limits, which can slow down productivity.
With a growing digital world, cloud storage is becoming an increasingly compelling option for storing large files. While there are a wealth of options on the market, some providers are better than others if you have large file sizes. To help you decide, we take a look at the best large cloud storage providers.
Storing and transferring large files is an essential feature for many users. Digital home videos can be very large. Business project files can easily top 50GB. If you find yourself dealing with huge file sizes, choosing a cloud storage service that can handle your large file needs is important.
Updated Sync.com’s plans and pricing information.
07/25/2023 Facts checked
This article has been rewritten to include an updated list and new features.
What Makes the Best Large File Cloud Storage?
To select the best cloud storage for large files, we extensively tested providers in terms of their storage capacity, speeds, and other features and limitations. It should come as no surprise that many of the cloud storage services in this article are also among the best cloud storage providers overall. Topping both lists is Sync.com.
Top Suggestions: Best Large Cloud Storage
- Sync.com — No file size limits with zero-knowledge encryption.
- pCloud — Does not limit file sizes for transfers or sharing.
- Icedrive — Handles file sizes up to 100TB; strong security and privacy.
- Google Drive — 5TB single file size limit; not great with user privacy.
- MEGA — No file size limit with the desktop app; imposes transfer limits.
Sync.com has no file size limits combined with excellent security and private encryption for all accounts. Additionally, it has generous file versioning, making it the top option for large files. pCloud also does not impose restraints on file sizes and does not limit transfer speeds. It has a private encryption folder, although it costs extra even with some paid subscriptions.
Icedrive does limit file sizes based on what its servers can handle, which is 100TB. Like pCloud, it has a private encryption folder, although it comes with every paid plan. Google Drive and MEGA each have solid file size allowances, although with some elements to consider that keep them from placing higher on the list.
The 5 Best Cloud Storage for Large Files
To select the best cloud storage for large files, we extensively tested providers in terms of their storage capacity, speeds, and other features and limitations. Topping the list is Sync.com.
More details about Sync.com:
- Pricing: 2TB for $8 per month (one-year plan)
- Free plan: 5GB.
- Provider website: sync.com
- Zero-knowledge encryption
- No file size limits
- Excellent versioning
- No block-level sync
- Not very fast
Sync.com checks all the boxes for those looking to store large files in the cloud. It does not limit file sizes. The only file size limit is your account’s cloud storage. However, Sync.com does limit you to 100,000 files per a given folder.
Another consideration is speed. Sync.com is not the fastest cloud storage provider out there, but it certainly isn’t slow. However, as with other cloud storage services, the larger the file, the longer the potential upload time. For example, you may notice a performance drop with files over 40GB using the Sync desktop app.
Sync.com has generous file versioning. Free accounts get 30 days of file versions. Paid accounts get 180 or 365 days of version history, with no limit to the number of versions kept, making Sync.com one of the best cloud storage services for versioning.
Signing up for a Sync.com account gives you 5GB of free storage, making it easy to test the service. Sync.com has paid plans that start at $5 per month for 200GB, but its best plan is 2TB for $8 per month, billed annually. Check out our Sync.com review for a more detailed look.
More details about pCloud:
- Pricing: 2TB for $8.33 per month (one-year plan) or $399 one-time.
- Free plan: 7GB.
- Provider website: pcloud.com
- Unlimited file size
- Fast transfer speeds
- Block-level sync
- Paid encryption
- Smaller storage amounts
pCloud has generous file size and upload limits, similar to the cloud storage services on this list. It doesn’t limit file size or upload or download speeds for data transfers. You can also share files or folders of any size with pCloud.
pCloud imposes traffic limits generated from the number of downloads on your shared links or public folders. Those on free accounts can’t exceed 50GB of data transfers within 30 days. Paid plans significantly increase the link traffic amount, with the option to buy additional link traffic a la carte.
If you need to send a large file quickly, pCloud offers a service that does not require an account, called pCloud Transfer. You can use it to instantly send one or more files up to 5GB to one or more recipients. Additionally, you can encrypt the files before sending them, adding an extra layer of protection.
pCloud’s free plan comes with 7GB of free storage space — provided you do some simple tasks. It’s further upgradable to 10GB by inviting friends. Its paid plans start with 500GB for $49.99 annually. We cover this and more in our pCloud review.
More details about Icedrive:
- Pricing: 1TB for $4.17 per month (one-year plan)
- Free plan: 10GB.
- Provider website: icedrive.net
- No file size limits
- Very fast
- Affordable plans
- Paid encryption folder
- Lower storage amounts
Icedrive is a fantastic provider for those looking to store large files. By its own admission, its servers can handle files up to 100TB, and Icedrive doesn’t put a limit on file size. However, it offers lower storage allotments on its plans than some other providers, which may hinder productivity.
Icedrive encrypts your data using Twofish encryption, considered more secure than the more commonly used Advanced Encryption Standard (AES). With its encryption, Icedrive can handle sharing sensitive or confidential large files. Additionally, with paid plans, you can have more layers of protection, like adding a password.
Icedrive accomplishes the rare feat of being a very secure and private cloud storage provider while also being extremely fast. When we tested to determine the fastest cloud storage services, Icedrive came out on top. Even with the lower storage amounts, Icedrive will handle your large files without issue.
Icedrive’s introductory plan comes with 10GB of free storage. You can upgrade to a paid plan like the 1TB for $4.17 monthly (with annual billing) if you need more storage. To learn more, read our Icedrive review.
- Bandwidth limit: 3GB
- Bandwidth limit: 250GB
- Bandwidth limit: 2TB
4. Google Drive
More details about Google Drive:
- Pricing: 2TB for $8.33 per month (one-year plan)
- Free plan: 15GB
- Provider website: google.com/drive
- Generous file sizes
- Great for collaboration
- Google Workspace apps
- Poor privacy
- No block-level sync
Google Drive puts a daily upload cap on individual users at 750GB between the “My Drive” folder and shared drives, which could be limiting if you have to move many large files among projects. If you upload a single file larger than 750GB, Google Drive won’t stop you, but you’ll have to wait until the next day to upload more. The maximum single file size, regardless of location, is 5TB.
Google Drive is one of the best providers for collaboration and productivity. It makes file sharing easy, and you can work on projects in real-time with others using the included Google Workspace apps, such as Google Docs. If those files are large, Google Drive has a generous file size allowance.
Security and Privacy
Google Drive uses AES 256-bit encryption to protect your data at rest and TLS/SSL encryption protocols to secure data transfers. Both types of encryption are used by most cloud storage. Google’s main drawback is its poor track record regarding user privacy. Google collects data on what products you use and how you use them. To its credit, Google is transparent in that it collects your data.
Google One’s plans are affordable if you need more storage than the 15GB free plan. The Basic plan has 100GB of storage for $1.67 per month with annual billing. We cover this and more in our Google Drive review.
More details about MEGA:
- Pricing: 2TB for $9.06 per month (one-year plan)
- Free plan: 20GB
- Provider website: mega.io
- Zero-knowledge encryption
- No file size limits
- Generous free account
- Transfer quota limits
- Expensive paid plans
MEGA does not have a file size limit when using the desktop app. Some web browsers, like Firefox, limit how much MEGA can transfer, but popular options such as Chrome or Edge aren’t similarly hampered.
The one element holding MEGA back from placing higher on this list is its transfer limit quota. Depending on your account, MEGA imposes restrictions on downloads — but not uploads. The transfer quota for a free account is not disclosed.
However, on your account’s dashboard, you can see how much of your transfer quota you have left. Once you reach your transfer quota, you’ll have to wait six hours before you can continue downloading on a free plan.
Similar to Sync.com, MEGA has private encryption for every account, even its free one. With zero-knowledge encryption, only you can access your account. MEGA cannot access your private encryption keys and can’t help you if you lose your password.
There is a 20GB free account, one of the most generous around. If that’s not enough, you can upgrade to a paid plan. The Pro I has 2TB of storage for $9.06 per month on the annual plan. Our MEGA review has all the details.
If you’re not keen on paying a monthly fee, you can opt for pCloud or Icedrive since they both offer lifetime plans. You can find more info in our pCloud vs MEGA and in our Icedrive vs MEGA reviews.
- File transfer: 2TB (Monthly plan) 24TB (yearly plan)
- File transfer: (monthly plan) 96TB (yearly plan)
- File transfer: 16TB (monthly plan) 192TB (yearly plan)
Honorable Mentions: Other Cloud Storage for Large Files You Should Consider
The list comprises our picks for the top options, but is hardly exhaustive. Below are two honorable mentions that just missed out on the top five.
Dropbox, one of the original cloud storage companies, has a solid reputation as an easy-to-use, highly collaborative cloud storage solution. Dropbox imposes a 50GB limit for file uploads done through the web app. If you use the desktop and mobile apps, the file size limit is 2TB. If you need to send large files, Dropbox Transfer lets you send files of 100GB, or up to 250GB using the Dropbox Relay paid option.
Dropbox only offers 2GB of free cloud storage, making using the cloud service challenging without purchasing a plan. Paying for an individual plan doesn’t come with much cloud storage space — 2TB with the Plus plan — compared to other options. There are plans with more storage, but they get expensive fast. Those looking for business storage will appreciate the business plan free trials on offer. For more information, check out our Dropbox review.
OneDrive imposes a single file size limit of 250GB, although it does not limit how much you can upload daily. OneDrive does recommend using the desktop app for files over a few gigabytes. The main benefit of OneDrive is that it integrates seamlessly with Microsoft 365 and comes with many popular and widely-used Office apps like Word and Excel.
A free account with OneDrive comes with 5GB, and the paid individual plans are very affordable. OneDrive’s main drawback is privacy, as it does not have zero-knowledge encryption. Additionally, Microsoft is upfront that it collects your data directly and indirectly. We cover privacy and more in our OneDrive review.
Going with one of the options on this list will set you up for success in handling your large files as your digital life grows. Sync.com lets you upload large files while giving you zero-knowledge encryption. pCloud, Icedrive, MEGA and Google Drive all have excellent large file capabilities, but each has a limitation or two to consider.
Do you use any of these cloud services for your large files? If so, what’s been your experience? Did we miss a great large file cloud service? Let us know in the comments section below. Thanks for reading our article.