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Drop your important files into this cloud box

Because of the unstable platforms we sometimes work on while using electronic media to communicate, many of us harbour lingering worries that we may lose our data and never recover it.

Unstable platforms aside, we are constantly reminded of the possibilities that our devices may crash or be stolen.

Now, what is one to do to put such worries to rest? The simple answer is cloud storage. This is a data saving option that enables one to secure their data offshore with service providers that include, among others, Dropbox, Google Drive, Livedrive, OneDrive, SpiderOak and SugarSync.

These services will let you store your data in one of their data banks, of course providing you with the requisite safety measures, including passwords.

However, what we are going to examine here is Dropbox. Those who are familiar with Dropbox may want to quickly point out that it is essentially a PC app. Whereas that may be true, the app enables you network with other devices.

I personally have Dropbox installed on my laptop but also have it on my smartphone, having the two devices talking to each other.

Oftentimes after discovering I cannot download a document or image onto my laptop because of poor internet connection, I simply resort to my phone, perhaps boasting a better connection, to do it.

I then immediately, and effortlessly, chuck them into my phone Dropbox where there will be instant syncing, thereafter I will find them sitting neatly and safely in the laptop Dropbox.

Dropbox works almost invisibly, appearing and working more like a part of your operating system than a separate app.
And that is not even the best aspect that makes me grateful and appreciative of Dropbox.

I once lost all the important data on my laptop ‒ documents, photos, videos and all ‒ due to the carelessness of a technician who was servicing it.

My initial reaction of devastation turned into total elation when, after remembering about my Dropbox account, proved that I could download most of the lost documents ‒ down to the last full stop ‒ from their website.

Jill Duffy believes “Dropbox is among the simplest and most elegant cloud storage and file-syncing services.” Writing on www.pcmag.com, she observes that dozens of apps integrate easily with Dropbox, making it highly versatile.

However, storage space that will be given to you gratis is limited. The free personal account starts you out with a meager 2GB, probably dissuading you from storing large files such as videos, though you can earn more space through referrals (an additional 500MB for every friend who joins, up to 16GB). A paid personal plan, called Dropbox Pro, includes 1TB of space for $9.99 per month or $99 per year.

fkhan@observer.ug

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