Cloud storage is the future. You can try to hold out, but all that kicking and screaming won't do you any good.
While physical storage for home users won't be going away any time soon, the convenience of the cloud will convert many.
It feels like all the top cloud storage companies are eager to give away space nowadays, so it can be hard to choose. My choice is Dropbox, however, as it is cross-platform, including Linux distributions like Ubuntu and Fedora. This week, Dropbox announced that Vodafone smartphone users can get 25GB of storage for free.
"Starting next month, new Dropbox users will get 25 GB of Dropbox space for a year on Vodafone's iPhone and Android phones, and the Dropbox app will come preloaded on the majority of Vodafone's Android phones. Vodafone will also exclusively integrate Dropbox into its new Backup+ service, to give customers an easy way to keep their mobile data safe", says Chris Barton of Dropbox.
Barton further explains, "what does this mean for Vodafone users? You get extra space to do even more on mobile, but it can also make the process of switching over to a new phone much easier. Just save all the photos, videos, and other files on your old phone to Dropbox, and then log into the Dropbox app on your new phone. All your stuff will be there waiting for you".
While this is cool, it stinks that it is only for new Dropbox users. I would prefer to see existing Dropbox accounts upgraded with an additional 25GB too; if they use it through the Backup+ service, that is. Why not reward existing users for their loyalty?
With that said, existing users should be able to create an additional account with a different email address to get around this, but that may not be convenient.
After the first year, users can reassess their needs and consider a paid Dropbox account or switching to another service. Surely Dropbox hopes to be "sticky" for these users, meaning that the difficulty in moving the files to other services will keep the user stuck to Dropbox; this is a typical practice for service providers.
If you do end up staying, a Pro account is only $10 (£6.50) per month, which gets you an entire terabyte.
So when can Vodafone users take advantage? The cellular provider says, "Vodafone will begin rolling out Backup+ to iOS and Android app stores by the end of March 2015, and customers in most Vodafone markets will be able to start using it over the coming months".