Cloud storage is becoming a great alternative to physical drives to store and organize files and other data. Cloud storage is certainly the future. But since there are so many different cloud storage options, it’s quite overwhelming to find which one is the perfect one for you.
pCloud may not be well-known to everyone, but I recently bumped into this amazing platform and thought of sharing it with you. So, in this article, I am going to talk about pCloud and see if it’s good enough for you to use. So, without wasting any time, let’s get straight out.
What Is pCloud?
As you would’ve already heard about popular cloud storage like Google Drive and Dropbox, you might wonder why new cloud storage platforms keep popping up from time to time. But pCloud is a little different from what other popular cloud storage options offer. pCloud lets you protect your data with zero-knowledge encryption.
It is a safe and secure platform that will let you use up to 10GB of free cloud storage. You can expand your storage options to up to 2TB. On top of that, you can avail many features like sharing your file, collaborating, real-time sync, and really affordable plans. It doesn’t have as many features as Google Drive, nor is it as integrated.
Like other cloud storage services, pCloud can be accessed through a browser. But many of the features were limited to the application only, which is available for computers and smartphones. I have been using it on my desktop and I’m quite impressed with its interface. I like how everything is kept organized and you won’t have any trouble locating your files anywhere.
There are separate tabs for Sync, Shareable, and Crypto sections to encrypt your valuable files. Using Sync, you can imminently make a backup of your local folder on your PC. Overall, I found it quite easy to store and use your files in the application. There was no clutter whatsoever and everything was nicely organized.
pCloud offers platform support for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS, and for browsers like Chrome, Opera, and Mozilla Firefox. There is a web version as well which you can access using any browser. So, here are all the platforms on which you can install the pCloud application.
I have been using pCloud on my Windows 10 and love the design. It is also available for Windows XP, 7, 8, and 8.1, both for 32 and 64 bit PCs. The PC application has been kept minimalistic and quite intuitive with all the options tucked inside different tabs which makes everything easy to find and use. Overall, the design is good and has been kept similar across all computer OS.
The interface in macOS is very similar to that of Windows 10, with a few minor tweaks. Instead of tabs, you will get side menus which you can edit based on your preferences, It Requires macOS 10.9 or later. And, there are separate versions for macOS powered with Intel and Apple Silicon processors.
I found the interface in Linux very similar to that in macOS. Again, you will be getting side menus to navigate from one feature to another. It requires you to have Ubuntu 14.04, Fedora 21, Debian 8, or later derivative distributions. And it is available for both 32 and 64 bit Linux systems.
pCloud looks a bit different when it comes down to mobile apps. I found the Android app similar to that of Google Drive, making you feel like being in a file explorer. This makes the usage more simplistic and easy to access all the features. Overall, the mobile app is really well designed and doesn’t give many areas to complain about.
The iOS app feels a little different from the Android app again. But it’s been kelp like a file explorer again. There are tabs at the bottom which help you navigate from one section to another, unlike the one on Android. There’s no drag and drop feature here as well, which I hope to add in the future.
There are browser extensions available for Chrome, Opera, and Firebox and it’s quite different from the app available for PCs and Smartphones. Using this, you can easily add any media file, like image, audio file, video directly to your pCloud account using a single click. You just have to install the browser extension on the browser and log in with your pCloud account.
Now just right-click on the media file and you will see a new option to add the file to your pCloud account. You can use this to add multiple files at once as well. But what I loved the most is that you can select any text, right-click and save directly with the option to edit it and select its format.
pCloud Free VS Paid
|Only 10GB for storage space||Storage space according to your plan|
|No access to pCloud Crypto||Access to pCloud Crypto|
pCloud has some of the most unique features. Let’s check out these features one by one.
The Crypto Folder: There is a separate section called Crypto Folder that offers no-knowledge encryption to keep your important files protected. This means that no one can retrieve your files if you lose the password, not even the pCloud’s staff. That normal file storage section doesn’t have this feature.
Screenshot Saving: Just like the OneDrive, pCloud has the feature to save all your screenshots of your PC directly to the cloud after you hit the Print Screen key. This is an easy and effective method to have a backup of your Screenshots without having to do anything manually, no copy-pasting. You can even set it to directly copy the download link of the screenshot to your clipboard.
Back-Up Other Services: Another amazing feature of pCloud is that it can take backup of your local folder on your PC and social apps like Facebook and Instagram. You can connect your pCloud storage with other cloud services like Google Drive and Dropbox. This feature is especially handy when you’re switching to pCloud from other cloud services.
Share Files: Like most other cloud storage options, you can share the files with multiple users and also collaborate with them and work on the files remotely. This is an important feature when you want to share your files online, especially among the employees working on a project.
Music Player: How many cloud services have you seen which have a built-in music player? Well, you’d be surprised to see pCloud has a built-in music player which can play any of your music files seamlessly. It is available on both web interface and application. You can search songs by title, artist, or playlist.
Convert Files: You can convert your files to other formats using the pCloud. When you have any of your video or audio stored on the cloud, you can use the option called ‘Download Converted’ and you will be able to choose from different formats.
Pros & Cons
|Fast syncing||No document editor|
|Easy interface||Limited customer support|
|Zero-knowledge encryption||Only 10GB as free storage|
|Sync any folder|
|Plays media files online|
|Bitcoin payments available|
|Great value for the price|
Pricing & License
There are actually 2 tiers of premium accounts available, 500GB and 2TB. And there are 3 different plans for each of these storage options.
|Plans||Monthly Charges||Annual Charges||Lifetime Plan|
If you want to share your cloud with your family then there’s a plan for you too. pCloud also offers a family plan which will cost you $500. It is a one-time payment that will give you access to 2TB of lifetime storage, shareable to up to 5 users.
There’s a business plan as well if you run a business and want your employees to collaborate on project files. It also offers 1TB storage per user for a limited number of users. It will cost you $9.99 per user a month for a monthly plan and $7.99 per user a month for the yearly plan. However, you may need to contact sales to set this up.
There are no system requirements or as such mentioned on the official website. The application is quite lightweight so it will work with pretty much any PC. However, you will need to have Windows 7 or a newer version of Windows to be able to install the application. But even on the older versions of Windows, you’d be able to access it using the web interface.
Impact On The System
The impact on the system is quite low for the pCloud application. During my testing, I noticed it was using about 0-3% of CPU, and about 30-40MB of memory. The network and GPU usage were 0. Being so lightweight, it not only consumes less resources but also works seamlessly with no stuttering.
Note: The PC used for testing is equipped with an i5 9th gen CPU and 8GB of RAM. the results might be different on your PC, depending upon the PC specs.
How To Use pCloud?
Using pCloud isn’t a tedious task. It is one of the most easy-to-use applications I have come across in recent times. So, Once you have the pCloud application installed on your PC or smartphone, here’s what you have to do.
- The first thing is to log in or create a new account using your email.
- Once that is done, you would be redirected to the main interface of the application and all the things here are quite straightforward.
- To upload your files to the cloud, simply go to the “Account” tab and then choose “Open Drive”.
- This will open a directory on your Windows file explorer and you can drag and drop the files which you want on the cloud.
On the mobile app, you will find a dedicated tab called “Files” which does the same thing. You can create a new folder and organize your files in there.
Now let’s check out what all the tabs have in them and how you can use them.
Files – You will find your uploaded files here, organized according to your preferences. (This tab is only available on the mobile app)
Account – You can modify your account details and access your files, open pCloud web and open the trash section using this tab.
Backup – You can take the backup of your local folder and files using this tab.
Sync – Sync connects your local files to the pCloud drive. So, if you make any change to the files locally, it will be reflected on the pCloud as well.
Shared folders – here you can find the folder that you have shared with others and users who have shared with you.
File requests – You can easily receive files from any user, directly to your own pCloud after requesting a file using this feature. The sender can upload files without even accessing your account.
Crypto Folder – Here you can save all your files protected with client-side encryption.
Settings – You can customize so many things using this tab, check storage, edit notifications, change passwords, add passcodes, automatic upload, delete cache and so much more.
Help – You can find so many FAQs and look for the answers to your queries.
Is pCloud better than Google Drive?
Some features are unique in pCloud. But overall, pCloud is not better than Google Drive.
Is pCloud a reliable cloud storage service?
Yes. pCloud is pretty much a reliable cloud storage service.
What is the best choice for free cloud storage?
You can choose pCloud, Google Drive, Mega, Sync, and One Drive for free cloud storage. But overall, Google Drive is the best choice for free cloud storage.
Do I Recommend pCloud
As mentioned earlier, pCloud is really a great cloud service with so many useful features. And the affordable plans make it the go-to option for choosing cloud storage service. I love how easy it is to use and operate. Literally, anyone can use it. The inclusion of the crypto folder is great for anyone looking to secure their important files. The zero-knowledge encryption is just the cherry on the cake.
If you’re an audiophile then pCloud is just the one for you. You can now organize your music files easily and enjoy them with the built-in music player. There are some other useful media features like resizing your photos and video and also converting them to other formats.
pricing is reasonable according to me. The lifetime plans are the most value for money and you’d rarely see them in other cloud services. Overall, I’m pretty impressed with this and would recommend you to try it as well.
pCloud lets you protect your data with zero-knowledge encryption. It is a safe and secure platform that will let you use up to 10GB of free cloud storage. You can expand your storage options to up to 2TB. On top of that, you can avail many features like sharing your file, collaborating, real-time sync, and really affordable plans.
Price Currency: USD
Operating System: "Windows", "Mac", "Android", ""iOS, "Android", "Linux"
Application Category: Cloud Storage