Amazon’s new unlimited cloud options are pretty emphatic

27 Mar 2015

Amazon might well have just changed the cloud storage game, now offering ‘Unlimited Photo’ and ‘Unlimited Everything’ plans that do exactly what they say on the tin.

There’s a firece battle amongst rival cloud storage providers, with the likes of Dropbox, Google and Microsoft some of the many challengers Amazon faces.

So, in a world of shrinking charges and growing options, what’s a company to do? Well, if you’re Amazon, then you simply offer infinite storage for an incredibly attractive annual fee.

At just US$11.99 a year, for example, the unlimited photo plan lets you get marginally more than what you pay for. Not just accepting every photo you could possible own, it also allows for 5gb of non-picture storage.

You can always go unlimited

The unlimited everything plan understandably costs more, US$59.99 a year. These will be hugely attractive offers to professionals who need an awful lot of content stored and available at all times.

But not just that, in today’s smartphone dictated world, we’re all storing up mounds and mounds of data, be it image, audio, video or text. Often, the average Joe doesn’t realise how much space this all takes up until it’s too late, and you have to start deleting stuff.

The other main attraction of going cloud – any option, not just Amazon’s latest eye-catcher – is the ability to store from multiple devices, a common issue of today’s smart-consumer.

“Most people have a lifetime of birthdays, vacations, holidays, and everyday moments stored across numerous devices. And, they don’t know how many gigabytes of storage they need to back all of them up,” said Josh Petersen, director of Amazon Cloud Drive.

No more worries

“With the two new plans we are introducing today, customers don’t need to worry about storage space—they now have an affordable, secure solution to store unlimited amounts of photos, videos, movies, music, and files in one convenient place.”

Essentially Amazon is ripping apart its previous price structure, which was a tiered system, users paying more the more they stored. This model is replicated across the industry.

Dropbox’s Pro account, for example, charges US$9.99 a month (or US$99 a year) for 1tb of storage (which was far cheaper than Amazon’s previous model). Google’s charges aren’t too dissimilar, with significant free storage to start with, each beaten by Microsoft (US6.99 per month for 1tb of storage and Office 365 included). Apple is at the top end.

Now it wouldn’t be at all surprising to these all follow suit. Although there isn’t much time, as Amazon is letting people trial the new service for three months before committing to a year’s subscription.

Clouds image, via Shutterstock

Gordon Hunt was a journalist with Silicon Republic