Bitcasa and Google Drive are cloud storage services which offer an incredible amount of space at a low price. They both charge $10/month for a terabyte, which puts them among the lowest-cost cloud storage services on a per GB basis.
They both provide easy access to your files anytime, anywhere, and on multiple devices. So which should you choose? Although Bitcasa and Google Drive are very similar, there are a few key differences. I’ll take a look at both of them in this in-depth review.
Ease of Use
Winner: Google Drive (barely)
Both Bitcasa and Google Drive are very easy to use. However, Google has a slight edge simply because there are fewer options. The installation for Google Drive can be done in under 30 seconds, after which you’ll be able to start storing your files in the cloud. You can drag and drop files into Google Drive just like a local hard drive, and they’ll be automatically sync’ed to the cloud.
Bitcasa is also easy, but there are more choices. During the installation you’ll be asked if you want to setup mirroring, which stores a copy of your files on your computer as well as in the cloud. By default, everything you move to Bitcasa will no longer take up space on your computer. A “Bitcasa Infinite Drive” will be created on your computer that you can put files into, which functions the same as Google Drive.
Bitcasa has more features, no doubt about it.
Both cloud storage services feature:
- A virtual drive to store your files
- Powerful web interfaces
- Public file sharing
- File version history
- Mobile apps to access your files on the go
- Mobile app camera auto-backup
Features specific to Bitcasa include:
- Mirroring (sync any folder to Bitcasa)
- 180 day file history vs. Google Drive’s 30 days
- Convergent encryption vs. no encryption with Google
- Password protected shared files
- Limit upload bandwidth
Features specific to Google Drive are:
- Sync unlimited devices vs. 5 devices with Bitcasa
- Google Docs integration
Winner: Bitcasa (barely)
Bitcasa and Google Drive have nearly identical pricing. They both charge $10 per month for 1 terabyte of cloud storage space. However, Bitcasa is less expensive if you’re storing more than 10TB of data.
Google Drive’s other storage plans include 100GB for $1.99/month, 10TB for $99.99/month, 20TB for $199.99/month, and 30TB for $299.99/month.
Bitcasa’s other plans include 5TB for $49/month, and unlimited storage for $99/month. So if you’re looking to store a ton of data in the cloud (or don’t want to worry about running out of space) you can save money with Bitcasa’s Infinite plan.
Both services have free plans. Bitcasa offers slightly more space (20GB vs Google Drive’s 15GB), but the free plan is limited to 3 devices. Other than that there’s very little difference here.
Bitcasa and Google Drive are very fast. I was able to max out my upload speed of 7.4 megabits per second (Mbps) on both services. With Bitcasa, I was able to sustain this speed for a whopping 700GB of test files, so you should have no problem with throttling or speed caps.
Download speeds were also fast. I was able to download files at 20+ Mbps with both services.
The Bitcasa desktop software works on Windows, Mac, and Linux.
The Google Drive desktop software only works on Windows and Mac. Google says it’s working on a client for Linux, but it “isn’t ready just yet.” Sorry Linux users. You can always access your files from the web interface, however.
Both services support the most popular mobile operating systems.
Google Drive has apps for Android, iOS, and Windows Phone. There’s also an entire category of Chrome apps that work with Google Drive.
Bitcasa works on iOS, Android, Windows Phone, and even Firefox OS phones. It’s also available as a Chrome browser extension, so you can download files directly to your Bitcasa account.
Both services will encrypt your files during transfer, so you don’t need to worry about people snooping on your data when using public WiFi and such. However, only Bitcasa will encrypt your files during storage.
Bitcasa’s form of encryption has been dubbed “mostly” safe by ExtremeTech, which is a whole lot better than Google’s complete lack of encryption. The way Bitcasa encrypts files is to use convergent encryption, in which the encryption key is derived from the actual data itself. This allows Bitcasa to deduplicate data (only store identical files once on their servers). The downside is that someone could “discover” if a file exists on Bitcasa’s servers simply by uploading it, and noticing that it uploads immediately.
Bitcasa vs Google Drive: Which should you choose?
Do you want more features? More security? Go with Bitcasa. Bitcasa supports mirroring, which lets you sync folders outside of Bitcasa’s virtual drive. Bitcasa also lets you choose whether you want to synchronize files on your computer, or only store them in the cloud.
If you need to synchronize more than 5 devices, go with Google Drive. Google has no limits to the number of devices. It also integrates seamlessly with Google Docs, so you can edit files in the cloud.
In the end, Bitcasa and Google Drive are both amazing cloud storage services. They’re both easy to use, offer ginormous amounts of space, and let you access your files anywhere.
Get Google Drive at http://drive.google.com
Get Bitcasa at http://www.bitcasa.com