This guest post is by Zoe Cohen.
I know, I know – cloud based storage seems like a pain to set up. You have to migrate files, set up accounts, organize everything, etc. But hear me out because it is absolutely worth utilizing cloud based storage. Stick with me for the duration of this article, and I’m sure I’ll make a convert out of you yet.
Though you might think using cloud based storage is a huge hassle, chances are you’re probably already using it, whether you realize it or not! Ever use Google Docs or Dropbox to share files with friends or coworkers? Cloud based storage. Ever use a phone that automatically syncs up your photos with your mobile carrier account? Cloud storage again. Given how plugged in we all are these days, it’s more likely than not that you’re already halfway to storing things in the cloud, even if you’re unaware of it. Migrating the rest of your data is absolutely worth it.
First of all, by nature of it being in the cloud, using cloud services means never having to carry anything around. No more external hard drives or thumb drives. These devices are hard to keep track of and easy to lose. Plus, they’re just another thing you have to carry around and keep track of. With cloud based storage, they’d just be dead weight, and you can get rid of them and lighten your load.
This freedom not only means you don’t have to tote around dense hard drives (heavy) or tiny USB drives (easy to lose), but you can also access that data anywhere. As long as you keep track of your login information, you can open your data wherever you are. For some people, this might mean leaving that laptop at home since you can access your information on your phone or public computer (not necessarily recommended, but it’ll do in a pinch!). If your laptop runs out of battery, no problem! Just open another device and log in.
Along similar lines, this makes migrating your information to a new device a breeze. How many times have you bought a new computer or phone and wound up nearly throwing it across the room in frustration because you couldn’t figure out how to migrate your data? With cloud services, you can either just log in and access them on your new device hassle-free or log in and download the data straight to the new device. Easy peasy.
This flexibility is great for freeing up space on your devices. It’s been shown that devices slow down the more information you store on them. By keeping your data in the cloud rather than on your device, you’re ensuring that your electronics continue to run smoothly and quickly. Furthermore, if you ever want to share information with colleagues or friends, rather than trying to attach a file to an e-mail (if it’s too big, forget about it!), you can just send them a link, and you know they’ll get it. This massively simplifies collaboration and sharing memories.
Finally, even if you do decide to ignore my advice and use an external hard drive to back up your information, consider also backing it up to a cloud service. Even if you don’t use cloud based storage nearly as much or in as many ways as I’ve listed above, it’s worth having a disaster backup of the backup that’s not tied to a physical possession. That way if something happened to your hard drive and main device, all of your precious data is still safe and sound, sleeping in the cloud.
If you want to create your own cloud based storage network then you should look at the Best NAS Devices for Personal article for cloud based storage hardware.