Apple launched its cloud computing service in 2011iCloud.It replaces old sync methods like manually plugging your iPhone into your Mac or PC to back up your data.Now, users can simply openiCloud, and let their iPhone do the rest.
All Apple devices have iCloud accessibility.While you get 5GB of free storage, you'll have to upgrade your storage to iCloud+ to take full advantage of Apple's cloud computing service.So, is iCloud worth your time and money?
If you're still hesitating, don't worry.We've compared the pros and cons of iCloud+ so you can make an informed, objective decision about whether to upgrade your account.
Advantages of iCloud+
iCloud is the most widely used cloud service on Apple devices, thanks to its accessibility and functionality.Here are the biggest advantages of choosing iCloud as a cloud service:
1. It's easy to use
Apple has always focused on ease of use.It creates devices with a straightforward user interface that takes very little time to master.For example, let's look at the iPhone.There are several built-in features that make the iPhone more accessible to older adults, so you don't even need to download a third-party app to make it useful to anyone.
Fortunately, Apple's focus on accessibility extends to its cloud computing services. iCloud encapsulates all the cloud-based functionality that users will need to sync and back up files, photos, calendar events, messages and videos, and other data from your device.
Also, you don't have to worry about manually updating your cloud library.With iCloud Photos, for example, your iPhone automatically uploads all of your photos and videos to the cloud, so you don't have to do anything.Just let the upload run in the background.
2. It integrates well with Apple’s ecosystem
iCloud's services are also available on non-iOS devices, but they integrate particularly well with Apple's ecosystem.You can access your iCloud storage from your iPhone, MacBook, iMac or Apple Watch and sync over Wi-Fi at any time.You will no longer need the hassle of transferring data through your PC.
For example, let's say your business primarily uses iOS devices and relies on iWork.If you don't have iCloud, you'll have to manually back up your data through on-site hardware and storage solutions, which can balloon your overhead.On the other hand, if you have iCloud, you can turn on the sync option directly.You and your authorized employees can access the company's iCloud Drive when needed and share iWork files to several devices at the same time.
Individual users usually only need to make backups for their phones or laptops.However, business owners with multiple iWork platforms may want to be safe by backing up all of their employees' devices, even if doing so would take up a lot of iCloud storage.
3. iCloud+ package has extra features
Apple includes additional services in its iCloud+ package.After upgrading, you will get these unique features like:
1. iCloud Private Relay (Beta): iCloud Private Relay allows users to browse Safari privately.It connects you to two relay stations.The first relay station receives requests from your IP address, while the second relay station generates a temporary IP address to hide your identity.However, don't use it as a VPN. iCloud Private Relay only encrypts traffic from Safari, it can't obfuscate data like a VPN can.
2. Hide My Email: The new Hide My Email feature lets you generate a temporary email address so your real personal email remains hidden.You can use this email address in place of your real address.The other party won't know your real email account, but emails will still be forwarded to your primary email inbox.
3. Custom Email Domain: Personalize your iCloud+ account with a domain name you already own.You can use the domain name of your company, personal brand or startup website.This feature is a must if you primarily operate with iWork.
4. HomeKit Secure Video Support: You can connect a security camera to your Home app.Record a video and access it later on your iPhone, iPad, Apple TV or iMac and other iCloud-enabled devices.
Of course, all of these features are just additions to iCloud's original service, like app sync, backup, Drive, and Photos.
Disadvantages of iCloud+
Despite the accessibility and functionality of the iCloud+ service, some users still see it as an unrealistic and unnecessary expense.
1. Cloud+ charges high monthly fees
Perhaps the most widely discussed downside of iCloud+ involves its cost.Yes, you can get 5GB for free.But considering that the average user consumes about 11GB of mobile phone storage space, 5GB is far from enough.
On the Apple Support iCloud+ plans and pricing page, it states that users from the US can upgrade for the following monthly fees:
50 GB: $0.99/month
200 GB: $2.99/month
Granted, these fees won't break you.However, if you can sync and backup your data in other ways, they are unnecessary expenses.For example, let's talk about iCloud Photos.It lets you store your videos and photos on iCloud, which you can access and download on any device.This feature has its advantages.However, you can also back up your media to your computer for free.
2. You need a lot of storage space to use each iCloud+ service
As we mentioned above, iCloud includes several useful services such as Backup, Photos, Calendar, Keychain, Notes, and Safari.However, if you want to get the most out of iCloud+, you might end up using a lot of paid storage.
For example, let's check out the iCloud Photos and iCloud Backup options.While both services sync your videos and photos through iCloud, they don't consume the same amount of storage space, and iCloud storage classifies them as separate data.If you have a lot of content on your iPhone, these two services can take up tens or hundreds of gigabytes of data.
And that's not counting any files you might want to save in iCloud Drive or any other iCloud service.
3. iCloud sync can be slow
You'll notice that the iCloud sync system sometimes takes a while to load.This problem is often encountered when iCloud's servers are saturated, and it takes some time to catch up with incoming demand.Fortunately, the system was able to solve this problem quickly.However, given iCloud's growing user base, you'll likely have to deal with slow sync issues frequently until Apple creates a more permanent solution.
Is iCloud+ service worth buying?
Whether you should upgrade your iCloud+ account depends on your device usage and storage needs.For example, if you store a lot of data and transfer it between multiple Apple devices, you'll benefit from the services of iCloud+.At least, you won't waste time manually backing up your data.
However, let's say you only have an iPhone, and you rarely use it for anything other than surf the web.Of course, you can still upgrade your iCloud account for a fee that won't break the bank.But it's an unnecessary expense because you don't have additional sync, backup, and storage needs.
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