Kicking off the series is Microsoft’s SkyDrive. It’s worth noting that this name appears likely to change as Microsoft lost a court case in the UK over the name back in July of this year.
Ease of Use and Integration
One of the major advantages for both consumers and administrators is the integration of SkyDrive into the Microsoft product line. That effort proceeds apace with the Office 360 line and the product is becoming more tightly tied into Active Directory as well. When it comes to cross-platform integration, Microsoft has hedged its bets by going with Android, iOS, and MAC in addition to their own suites. Notably absent, however, is the RIM product line.
The base offering of 7GB is in the middle of the range for similar products which range from 2 to 10GB. The tiered pricing, however, has some breakpoints that are a bit odd as they are based on the 7GB minimum. The table included on this page has the full breakdown.
These costs are at least double and in some cases more than double the cost of similar offerings. This is the single major sticking point for SkyDrive. The obvious intent is to get consumers hooked on the product and thereby back door into the commercial environment.
Upload and download speeds, including bursting, are affected by factors such as local connectivity that uncontrolled tests are inconclusive. APIs, encryption and versioning are so nearly ubiquitous that they provide no significant differentiation.
While the SkyDrive product seems to have the advantage of tight integration other products are coming along rapidly as add-ons, so unless you won’t need more than 7 GB of space, its pricing puts it well out of the market.