I have recently been re-evaluating the cloud storage market and have come across a pretty good service that is fairly new to the landscape.
*** As of May 2016 Copy.com is no more, but it was a great idea while it lasted
Copy has everything you would expect in a cloud storage service. There are mobile apps, desktop apps and file sharing options… but there are two interesting things that set Copy apart from other similar services.
First, you get 15GB of free storage. Dropbox only gives you 2GB 😦 Although Google Drive also gives you 15GB the free account from Copy offers MUCH more space (see below)
Second, your files do not need to be placed in the ‘Copy Folder’ like you would have to do with Dropbox or other services. If you create a shortcut to a folder that you want to sync and place only the shortcut into the Copy Folder all the files will sync. You no longer need to make a second copy of files, or entire folders, to place in the main syncing folder (this eats up local storage space on desktops and laptops).
FINALLY, I cannot stress how amazing this feature is! All other cloud storage services ‘share’ files, but what they actually do is copy all the files to each person that is ‘sharing’ them. I have upped my Dropbox account to 75GB through referrals and special offers, all free. If I want to share a 3GB folder that I have with a friend I can only share the link to the folder, I can’t invite them to participate in adding and editing files because their dropbox account only has the free 2GB of storage. This is the traditional way that cloud storage works, where everyone has a copy of every file that is shared. Copy.com is turning this on its head… and it is amazing! What copy does is it actually shares the files between shared accounts. So if I have a 3GB folder and share it with 2 friends it divides the files between the 3 of us. We all have access to every file, but our accounts are only docked 1GB each (3GB divided by 3 people). So, technically your 15GB free account is MUCH more!
This is GREAT for teachers because if you want to set up a folder and share it with teaching partners or teachers in other schools there is no need for all the data to go against the limits of each account (we love to collaborate!). FDK teachers can upload pictures and videos and once the folder is shared between the teacher and ECE alone that means each class has 30GB of free storage. Most schools I have been to have at least two FDK classes, which means they can combine efforts and now have 60GB of free storage to record and document all the awesome inquiry based learning that happens. This is an even better option in high-school where entire departments can share a folder and divide the data through all their accounts, leaving the rest of the free storage space for files and pictures that are for individual teachers’ needs.
EXTRA FREE SPACE is also offered through referrals, with 5GB for each of the 5 referrals allowed (you get 5GB and they get the same). This means that the 4 FDK teachers from my example above will each get an additional 10GB (5 for referring another teacher and 5 for being referred). Our 60GB of free storage now becomes 100GB!
***Start earning free space right now by signing up with my referral link and you’ll have 20GB right away!***
The copy/upload/sync speed of Copy.com is a bit slower compared to drobox, but if you are looking for A LOT of FREE storage this may just be the best option for your needs… especially if you are going to be collaborating with other teachers.