The cloud is something most of us use every single day, both at home and work. If you’re someone who is in the market for either purpose, one of the things you’ll need to think about is cost. To do that, you must understand private and public options.

How Much Does It Cost for a Private Cloud?

One of the major considerations that have to be made before you can begin comparing prices related to the cloud is which version you want: private or public.

Private clouds are best for companies that require lots of customization, have major storage needs, and/or don’t want to share their resources with anyone else. It’s almost never best for individuals.

Even if you choose the private cloud, you’ll have some important considerations to make. For example, would you rather keep your cloud servers on premise or hire another company to house them? The latter will involve a lot less work but usually comes at a higher cost, as well.

If you’re contemplating going down this road, you’re probably not too concerned with actual cloud storage pricing. No gigs per dollar amount could realistically be enough to get your company to decide on a public version.

For companies thinking private options, cloud storage pricing will have far more to do with their unique preferences and options for customization.

The 2 Types of Public Cloud Options

The good news is that the public cloud doesn’t cost nearly as much, so if you’re looking for an option solely for storing your important personal documents, videos, and images, you don’t need to worry about coming up with a small fortune. In fact, plenty of options are completely free.

At the same time, many companies turn to public cloud providers, too. You might even be surprised to learn just how effective the public type can be for many businesses.

1. Personal-Use Cloud Storage

While it’s tough to know exactly who deserves the credit, Dropbox certainly made the cloud popular among individuals who needed a place to keep their pictures, videos, music, and important documents. Much of this was because of how user-friendly it was, but Dropbox prices have always been incredibly low, too.

Here is the breakdown of Dropbox and other popular options for cloud storage and their pricing:

  • DropboxThe first 2GB of space is free per user. After that, it’s $8.25/month for up to 1TB, and then $16/month for up to 1TB, plus full text search and smart sync.
  • Google DriveThe first 15GB of space is free per user. After that, it’s $1.99/month for up to 100GB, then $9.99/month for 1TB, and $99.99/month for 10TB.
  • OneDriveThe first 5GB of space is free per user. After that, it’s $1.99/month for up to 50GB. Next are two more options involving premium features that go for $69.99 and $99.99 a year (these include access to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Office, and Notebook).

While the gigs per dollar are important, it’s also worth taking some time to explore these options in detail. For example, seeing as this is for personal use, you want the one that will suit those personal uses and be as user-friendly as possible.

2. Cloud Storage for Business Purposes

While you could use any of the public cloud options in the last section for business purposes, your company may have specific needs that these services can’t support. In that case, the following four public cloud storage options may be a better fit.

  • Amazon Web Services (AWS)Easily the market leader at the moment, AWS’s many options include services specific to the Internet of Things (IoT), development, mobile, analytics, machine learning, and much more.
  • Microsoft AzureAzure isn’t short on services, either. Its range extends through PaaS, IaaS, and SaaS. It also comes with support for its Office 365 products.
  • Google CloudGoogle’s offering (not to be confused with Google Drive) includes some unique options for businesses of all different industries but especially tech. These include Container Engine, App Engine, and Compute Engine.
  • IBM CloudAlthough it’s far from one of the largest providers, IBM Cloud is finding more and more users every year.

Again, while cloud storage pricing is going to be fairly important when considering this asset for your business, it shouldn’t be the only one. Also, you’ll need to look into those on your own as the fees are related to the different services you request with your package.

For example, Adobe Creative cloud pricing may not make the most sense for your budget. However, if your company requires Adobe’s desktop and mobile apps, and other features that support design, then it might make more sense than choosing another option and paying more for those services.

Understanding Your Cloud Options

As we’ve mentioned throughout this article, it’s important that you dig into all of the relevant options for your specific purposes and find which one makes the most sense. Even most paid versions have free trials you can experiment with before making a final decision.

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