There are lots of cloud storage services to choose from; Dropbox, Box and Google Drive, but is SugarSync the better business option?
SugarSync is a cloud based synchronisation storage service that allows you to save all your files in one cloud space. With so many different cloud storage options available it can be difficult to decide which one is best for your business, but SugarSync wants to be your one and only option for storing documents in the cloud.
SugarSync offers its cloud synchronisation service with dedicated applications for PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad and Android devices. There are also dedicated apps for older Symbian, Windows Mobile and BlackBerry devices but there isn’t a service for those on Windows Phone 8 or BlackBerry 10.
Offering the service over both desktop and mobile devices is an aim to help you access work and files whilst on the move. If you’ve started editing a document on an iPhone whilst on a train, it will save in real time and when you return to your computer it’ll give you access to the same document with all the editing already completed.
Upon signing into the app, SugarSync gives the option to save files already on your phone directly to the cloud service. If you decide not to you can always manually add them in at a later date.
Changes upon all versions of the software happen instantaneously, if you change something it’ll be across all the connected devices within a matter of seconds, depending on the strength of your internet connection. If you’re running off a 4G connection you can expect it to update right away without needing to refresh the software.
When testing the app on Android, I had 256 photos on my phone ready to back up, which took a little under hour. Mostly the backup process comes down to the internet connection you’re using rather than the app itself.
The app allows files to be synced to certain devices meaning specific files can be shared onto your work computer but not your personal phone or vice versa. There is also an offline mode where if you know you’ll be without an internet connection you can sync it up so you can edit documents whilst travelling. The changes you make will then be synced once you connect back up to the internet again.
Each file uploaded to your SugarSync account can be shared to others from any compatible device. If it isn’t a confidential document it can be shared through a public link via email, social networking or just uploading it to the web directly.
There is also the ability to share privately to one person via email - you can add in recipients by using their email address and sending the file directly from the app. Other options whilst sharing include the ability to make it read only or open it up for them to edit the document.
Business SugarSync plans come with various user accounts from two people to 10+, allowing you to share projects and files between your colleagues for easy collaboration on projects.
Each business based account also comes with an admin dashboard that can add in other users, add in more storage, open or close restrictions and monitor other users activity on the platform. Business accounts also come with direct phone support with real life human beings on the other end of the phone to help with any problems, do note this is only available between 6AM and 5PM Pacific Time on weekdays. For all other enquires there is a live chat platform and email support as well.
Security is a big issue when using cloud storage for businesses and SugarSync knows it is a priority for the majority of its user base. Every interaction between the app and SugarSync uses TLS (SSL 3.3) encryption and 256-bit AES keys, both are the industry standard for secure web communications. No matter what version of SugarSync you are using, all desktop and mobile applications go through the same process to ensure protection.
As for protecting each individual device, you can set up a PIN directly inside the app itself which you’ll need to enter every time you enter the app. You’re restricted to a 4-digit pin number; sadly there is no way of making more complicated passwords to ensure extra security.
The UI across the board is kept simple for each mobile application and the desktop versions. It is nothing revolutionary but it keeps it simple and easy to read at all times which is all you really need.
SugarSync’s pricing strategy is split into individual and business accounts. Neither accounts have a free option so you’ll have to settle for either a 30-day or 90-day free trial in order to test out SugarSync’s service.
SugarSync doesn’t have UK specific pricing so these conversions were right at the time of writing but may have changed since. An individual account with 100GB of storage costs $9.99 a month of $74.99 (£50) a year. For 250GB it costs $24.99 a month or $99.99 (£66) a year whilst 500GB costs $39.99 a month or $249.99 (£166) a year.
Business accounts with 1000GB of storage and access for 1 to 3 users will cost either $55 a month or $550 (£365) a year with the price increasing for every new user you add. If you need more than ten users SugarSync will create your own custom plan for the service as well.
All in all, SugarSync offers a slick service with more than enough features to compete with the likes of Box, Dropbox and Google Drive. Synchronisation is quick and offers the ability to edit documents on a range of different devices without having to manually upload the documents to a cloud storage service each time. SugarSync is one of the best options around and if you’re willing to pay a little extra than you would for Google Drive, you won’t be disappointed.
SugarSync is a great alternative to other storage platforms with the advantage of automatic syncing and the ability to control which files sync to what devices
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