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ZipCloud Cloud Storage Review

Quick Look

ZipCloud is a cloud backup and syncing service which is available for Windows, Mac, Linux, Android and iOS. It is a UK company with servers based in the United States. Though advertised as an unlimited cloud storage app, it does not provide unlimited plans. Its basic plans start at $8.69 per month for 75GB.

About ZipCloud

Most people might not know this, but ZipCloud is a sister company of JustCloud and MyPCBackup. All of them are owned by Just Develop It, a UK company, but its offices are located in the Unites States.

When you look at JustCloud's and ZipCloud's website, you will see how strikingly similar they look. And that's not the only thing they have in common, their pricing plans and interface is similar as well. We will discuss that at length in our review.


Who Should Use It? 

simple safe secure

Though ZipCloud proudly states on its homepage that it provides unlimited storage, it's nowhere to be found on its pricing page. But even with the limited backup storage plans, there is absolutely no denying that ZipCloud is an affordable backup service, and it can be easily used for personal purposes. Whether you are a student, looking to store bulks of study files online, or you just want to store your big photo album, ZipCloud is perfect for both of them.

This service can prove to be a bit challenging for business users with its limited plans and features. ZipCloud does give you basic control over your data, but it does not let you choose every little detail about the data being backed up, which could be a problem. Also, while some cloud backups provide you with a zero knowledge policy, here is what ZipCloud says in its Terms and Conditions section:

"ZipCloud enforces content recognition and filtering and a manual review of files backed up and stored."

This line could easily leave any business owner spooked. After all, nobody wants a backup company to see their data.


Features: 

  • Automatic Backups
  • File Sync
  • File versioning
  • Keeps deleted files
  • Backs up network drives
  • Backing up of 2+ machines
  • Cross-Platform Compatible
  • & more...

Backup and Restoration

Signing up to ZipCloud is extremely easy. You can upload documents through its web app by dragging and dropping, or you can download its desktop app.

setup wizard

But there is something you should know - JustCloud, ZipCloud and myPCBackup share the user data. So if you try to sign up with the same email address, then you will be directed to JustCloud or myPCBackup's website. The installation is easy, and the desktop app looks very similar to JusCloud. It will ask you whether it should automatically upload all the files or you want to select them. Once you click on manual selection, a new window with the tree structure of your drive will open. You can check mark whichever files you want to upload.

backup selection

You can revisit this by going to the ‘Backup' option, and you can also view all the files that are already on the cloud. There is an option to restore files as well.

The best part about ZipCloud is that it uploads files in their original file structure, whether you are uploading a single file or the entire drive. This feature does not just help in navigating and searching the files, but it also helps in restoration process when you have lost all the data on your disk.

back up progress

Apart from that, there is also a Sync folder. All the files that need to be synced with their latest version should be dragged and dropped here. ZipCloud keeps its backup folder separate from the sync folder to avoid any confusion and to let the users take the advantages of two very powerful features.

zipcloud settings

Just like JustCloud, ZipCloud too has a restriction on file size. As a free user, you only get a file size limit of 5 MB, which is gruesomely small. You can increase this limit to 1 GB with Pro plans. There is also an option for incremental backup and volume shadow copy.

zc syncfolder

With a dedicated file sync folder on ZipCloud, it becomes as easy as drag and drop to make sure your files are always available on the cloud. But for a free account, you only get a 15 MB storage in your sync folder.

File sharing is limited on the web app and the desktop app, but you can share pictures from your ZipCloud account through its phone app. This way it’s super easy to share your vacation picture on Facebook and Instagram.


Privacy & Security

ZipCloud claims to provide 256-bit AES encryption, which are often termed as military grade encryption. But it doesn't have a private encryption where you can set your key. On top of that, ZipCloud stores all its data on Google Cloud Platform. Its servers are located in multiple locations all over the US.

The company states obvious reasons for storing data on Google Cloud including several layers of redundancy and data duplication. ZipCloud also states that it follows high-security protocol to make sure the data is not publicly disclosed. But, what about the fact that Google has an open door policy to the NSA? Even if your data is not disclosed publically, it can still be easily accessed by the government. Since the data is not encrypted on the local side, this could be a major concern for the business users.


Web & Mobile App

Web app and mobile app are limited in features when compared to its desktop counterpart. When you log into the web app, the first thing you see is a download link to the desktop software. You can also check the files backed up and the files in the sync folder.

web application screen

Once you hover over the files, you can check the different versions of it or share it. Files can either be shared by email, by public links or by sharing them directly on social media. Web app gives you the option to renew your subscription and pay for it. You can also get more free space by referrals or by posting about ZipCloud on social media.


Pricing and Plans

This is where things get confusing. First of all, you cannot view any pricing plans until you sign up for a free trial which could be troubling for users who want to decide on a cloud storage service based on their prices.

There are three main plans available:

  • Home - 75GB
  • Premium - 250GB
  • Ultimate - 1TB

As you can see, there are no unlimited storage plans as advertised by ZipCloud on its home page. On top of that, you have to pay for a lot of extra features like extending file size limit to 5 GB, recycle bin and hourly backup. With the additional services and no unlimited storage, the actual price for ZipCloud goes up tremendously since other services do not charge extra for it.

Even if they do, they should mention it right on the main home page before users sign up for trial.


What's It Missing? 

ZipCloud is not as refined as you would want it to be. Its desktop app has some features, but most of the features that you would want from a backup app are not available since they are put under premium features category.

The file size limit can also be a significant issue. Free account only has a 5 MB file size limit and even if you upgrade you only get a 1GB file size limit. This can be tough to work with, especially when other cloud backup apps provide storage for unlimited file size.


[review]

Tech Specs: 

Specifications

  • Free Storage: 1 GB
  • Free Trial: 14 days
  • System: Windows, Mac, Linux
  • Price: Starting at $8.69/month

Mobile

  • Mobile Apps: iOS, Android

Backup Features

  • Synchronization: Separate Sync folder
  • Free External HD Backup: Yes
  • Continuous Backup: Yes
  • Incremental Backup: Yes
  • Backup Scheduling: Yes
  • Bare Metal Backup: No
  • Exclude File Extensions for Backup: Yes
  • Network Drives: Yes
  • Bandwidth Throttling: Yes
  • Web Access: Yes
  • HIPAA Compliant: No
  • File Size Limit: Yes. 5 MB for free accounts and 1 GB for paid accounts
  • Included Machines: 1

Security

  • Local Encryption: No
  • Server Side Encryption: 256-bit
  • Keeps deleted files: For an unlimited time period
  • File Versioning: 7 versions

Sharing/Collaboration

  • File Sharing: Yes
  • Multiple Accounts: No
  • Share Photo Albums: No
  • Music Streaming: No
  • Folder Collaboration: Yes
  • Outlook Backup: Yes
Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 12 comments
Brad Johnson - February 24, 2016

I just need a cloud storage plan that will help our household not lose photos and documents such as homework. Zip Cloud is really simple to use so everyone in the household has an account folder. No more complaints or excuses about lost homework now that we use Zip Cloud. The price is right and the interface is easy to learn right away which is a bonus in our busy house.

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Don - August 12, 2016

This is one of the few services I didn’t have trouble with on my Mac. I am new to computers in general so I expect at least some of my trouble was that. I can upload and download files quickly with Zip Cloud and I don’t have to think about syncing my hard drive every day because the service takes care of that for me. Email links of files are helpful during travel and when doing business with others.

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Joe - August 12, 2016

I know that this is the same company that offers Justcloud but I like the Zip Cloud interface better. It seems more simple to use and the download times are faster for me. The price is a bit of a downer but you get what you pay for when it comes to web services and Zip Cloud has definitely saved me a lot of time and money over the last year running my business and going to school at the same time.

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Karla Smith - August 12, 2016

I am glad I finally took the plunge and actually payed for a cloud storage service because it saved all my important documents from going down the drain when my hard drive crashed last month. You have to ask how important your memories are to you if you are thinking it is not worth it to pay for a service. I have the 1 TB plan and that is enough to keep me protected and worry free.

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Serena Brody - August 12, 2016

I took advantage of the 14 day trial and subscribed for a year. This took me from being one of the many that never remembered to back up her files to being always synced and able to get to whatever I need. My job means I am gone more often than not so it is crucial to have a good solution when it comes to cloud storage. I was so tired of forgetting files on my home PC when going on the road.

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Celia Darby - August 12, 2016

I was a Dropbox user in the past but didn’t like that files that I deleted didn’t back up. I lost a bit of information and a friend told me about Zip Cloud. This is one of the best services I have used for staying organized at work and school. My high schooler has subscribed to this and is doing better in school because she doesn’t lose assignments anymore.

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Avery Black - September 22, 2016

I like that this cloud service automatically backs up my files and lets me access even deleted files from anywhere I have web access. I wish that I had subscribed sooner so that I would still have some of the files I accrued in college. All of my photos are now backed up using Zip Cloud and it is easy for me to get to them and share them with others in my family.

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Miles Crowe - December 12, 2016

I love that you can get free storage for getting friends and family to sign up. Although I do subscribe to this service it is a nice perk to get some bonus storage, especially considering that Zip Cloud is more expensive then a lot of services. Still though, I am happy with the security and the fast download times when I really need a document.

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Sally Brown - December 21, 2016

While I was not happy that I had to sign up before knowing exactly what it was going to cost me, it turned out to be worth it. I have been looking for a cloud storage service that would easily archive even deleted files. After all who hasn’t deleted something to make space only to regret it later? Zip Cloud is a good solution for my kid’s that forget papers at home all too often.

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Peter Wall - January 5, 2017

Zip Cloud is great for emailing links to friends and family. It is easy to sync all my files and since I use a lot of different operating systems, I am glad that my files are able to sync with no major errors or hassle. The price can be a bit steep if you get a lot of extra features but it is worth it because you can even get files you delete as long as you stay a subscriber. I highly recommend Zip Cloud.

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Jen Baxter - January 14, 2017

At first I didn’t like that you could only store a measly 15 MB for free but when I realized how easy it was to use the interface I really couldn’t go back to my previous cloud drive provider. I have deleted more than one file that I later wanted to access so the fact that I can always go back and get those files is enough for me to by a long term user of Zip Cloud.

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Hal Frank - January 21, 2017

While the web and app features are more limited it is a great service for those that just want something simple so we don’t have to worry about pics and personal docs going down the memory hole. The service is affordable and makes sense for basic use. Not sure how it would function for a business though. I imagine there are plans for a lot of space usage.

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