Why You Should Never Buy More iCloud Storage
Feeling the squeeze of your free 5GB iCloud storage limit? Getting pop-ups warning that your space is almost full? You’re probably tempted to click that “Buy More Storage” button, right?
Well, stop right there!
Think long and hard before handing over your hard-earned cash to Apple for cloud storage. There are so many better ways to spend that monthly subscription fee!
Let me enlighten you on the drawbacks of buying more iCloud storage. I promise by the end, you’ll be dying to delete some photos and free up space instead of lining Apple’s pockets.
10 reasons why you shouldn’t buy more iCloud storage
1. It’s relatively expensive
Apple charges ongoing monthly fees for iCloud storage that can really add up over time. For example, upgrading to the 200GB plan at $2.99 per month works out to $35.88 per year. If you keep that plan for 3 years, you would spend $107.64!
Considering it’s just for cloud storage, these fees are quite high compared to alternative options.
2. You may not need it
The free 5GB of storage Apple provides is sufficient for many users’ needs. This space can hold thousands of photos and documents.
Carefully audit your current storage usage and consider if you can delete or offload any unnecessary files. In many cases, just being more selective about what you store in iCloud can avoid the need for a paid upgrade.
3. There are free alternatives
If you’re primarily looking for cloud storage for photos, apps like Google Photos provide free unlimited storage for high quality images. For documents and other files, services like Dropbox, Box, and Google Drive start with free base storage levels around 15GB.
Taking advantage of these free cloud storage options can provide you with plenty of space without the recurring fees of iCloud. Only go down the paid route if you truly need capabilities beyond what these free services offer.
4. Lock-in to Apple ecosystem
Purchasing iCloud storage will lock you into Apple’s ecosystem, making it much harder to switch to Android or Windows devices down the road.
For example, if you have years of photos stored in iCloud, you probably won’t want to lose access to them if moving away from iPhone. By not investing in iCloud, you keep your options open and avoid platform lock-in.
5. Security/privacy concerns
Apple has full access to all files stored in iCloud. While they claim strong security measures, there have been security breaches like in 2014 when hackers accessed celebrity iCloud accounts and leaked private photos.
There are inherent risks associated with storing your personal data on someone else’s servers. Using third-party cloud services with strong encryption may provide enhanced security and reduce risks.
6. Reliability issues
While iCloud is fairly robust, it’s an online service with complex software that’s not 100% reliable. Users do occasionally encounter syncing issues, random outages preventing access to files, or in worst cases, partial data loss.
Given you pay a monthly fee for iCloud, flaws in reliability are super frustrating. Issues are rare but given you pay for the service, even occasional glitches are unacceptable.
7. Can be shared among family
Using Family Sharing, you can share a single iCloud storage plan with family members thereby reducing the need for multiple subscriptions. Evaluate if you can share storage with your partner or others who already pay for extra storage.
This does, however, come with privacy trade-offs in providing family access to your data.
8. Encourages hoarding
Having an abundance of available storage makes it easy to hoard unused files and photos that you don’t really need quick access to. Paying for larger storage can enable bad habits like keeping every single photo instead of just your best shots. Being selective and intentional is healthier than having a bloated cloud hoard available.
9. Extra steps to access data
Unlike local storage on your devices or external drives, iCloud data isn’t directly accessible. For example, you’ll need internet access to access your iCloud content. This adds extra steps to get to your files.
In some cases, like wanting to upload a file from your iCloud storage to a website, it’s also not as straightforward as it would be if the file were simply stored on your device.
10. Apple can delete data
In their iCloud terms, Apple reserves the right to delete iCloud accounts that have been inactive for over a year. This means if you ever stop using iCloud, you could lose access and have data like photos deleted.
This makes proper local backups essential, as you don’t fully control the data that’s solely stored in the cloud.
As we’ve explored, iCloud storage brings drawbacks like recurring fees, privacy risks, and reliability issues. The benefits of convenient syncing and easy photo storage come with many strings attached.
Before paying Apple monthly rent for cloud storage, take time to analyze your needs and options. Audit what data you truly require backup for. Optimize local storage and leverage free alternatives where possible.
With smart data practices, you can likely avoid pricey iCloud subscription fees. The storage relief you gain is well worth the effort of rethinking your relationship with data.
Proceed with caution before purchasing more iCloud storage space. Chances are high you can find a better solution that keeps money in your wallet.