Cloud Storage Definition, Advantages and Types
Cloud storage is a rather new type of cloud service that stores and manages user data in the cloud.
Basically, user data is transported over the Internet and uploaded on cloud servers provided by a cloud storage service. For example, services such as Dropbox, OneDrive, iCloud and Google Drive are some of the most well-known cloud storage models. Aside from these rather well-known services, there are countless other types of cloud storage services, quite different between each other, in design and potential uses.
Cloud storage services are booming nowadays. The competition is also increasing day by day among storage providers. While the cost per gigabyte, either stored and/or transferred is always decreasing (due to fast development of computing technology) the services are provided at a higher cost than the bare cost of hardware, as the providers need to cover other costs, such as security, maintenance and so on. This is also lucrative for the providers.
There are several types of cloud storage services: Public cloud storage, private cloud storage, or hybrid cloud storage. Each type of storage has its own advantages and use cases.
It is to be noted that sometimes cloud storage might also cause security issues, if not managed correctly by the account owner and/or their employees. In several cases, unprotected storage buckets where confidential data was stored, were exposed to the public due to user mismanagement (side note, this is not the cloud storage provider's fault but the account owner's fault). Even with such inherent risks, with proper handling the cloud storage technology is considered very safe, for good reasons, and it provides great advantages for businesses of all sizes. It also simplifies internal business processes from the technology standpoint, and business managers can then enhance their work with great tools for either storage, download and distribution of data across networks or the Internet.
The largest top 3 cloud systems (namely Amazon AWS, Google Cloud and Microsoft Azure) also provide a wide array of cloud storage services for different purposes. However the world of cloud storage does not end with the above names. There are countless other services of all sizes, from large to small, designed to cover various needs. Furthermore, cloud providers that used to offer mostly VPS hosting in the past (such as DigitalOcean or Scaleway for example) are currently expanding rapidly their service based into object storage for example, a type of service with great appeal to developers of business applications, that makes object storage easy and reliable.
Note: Throughout our website we explore various types of cloud storage systems and their use cases. Feel free to browse further to a topic of your interest, as you will indeed find much more through the website. If you have any comments or suggestions on how to improve our cloud computing and cloud storage-oriented info, do not hesitate to contact us with your suggestions.