Dropbox vs Google Drive vs Box vs?

How does everyone feel about the services in 2024? 3 or 4 years ago Dropbox was the clear winner for Mac but it has fallen off a cliff to the fault of both Dropbox & Apple OS. I hardly ever interact with Google Drive outside of the browser so I am not sure if its Finder integration is any better.

I was doing my annual subscription review and realized I pay for the (annually)
-Dropbox 2TB $120

  • Google One 2TB $105
  • Box 100GB - $120

I was a very early adopter to Dropbox and its early integration with Mac OS kept me on-board for so long but recently with the Mac App being so buggy I can’t even Gert my Alfred preference to sync (I get permission errors on the other Mac and the Alfred devs basically just said “Its a dropbox issue sorry”) I THINK I will end up dropping Dropbox (I have until Nov)

I find myself using Google Drive more often than not to share any data with anybody and it has been about 2 years since I shared anything with someone using a dropbox link.

The shame of it is I would gladly keep both for half the storage & half the price as I don’t even have 1TB in either account.

Also I sort to laughed when I saw I was paying the same for box for 100gb.

I have a specific use case for Box where I just have 3 shared folders of photos and the Sync has been rock solid so I will likely end up keeping that. I have no work requirements for these so its all for personal use.

(I know iCloud Drive has improved but I still feel like I want to keep either Google and / or Dropbox

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I used OneDrive for most things until recently (I switched to my own cloud storage with a NAS). OneDrive is 1TB for a ~$75 a year single person, or ~$120 a year family if I remember correctly. That’s a Microsoft365 account, so you also get all the Office stuff as well. It works great on a Mac (on a PC it is very aggressive about wanting you to use it).


For historical reasons with collaborators, I use both Dropbox and Google for real work, and Apple’s iCloud as it’s standard for so many apps. Dropbox and Google work well and have no complaints with either. I have no success with adhoc iCloud use as it seems to have a mind of its own when or if to sync. I do wish there was a less-expensive Dropbox option with perhaps less space allocation, but I put up with what they offer.

Dropbox is working perfectly for me across all my Apple devices as well as my wife’s Windows laptop.

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I used Dropbox extensively and as an early adopter got tons of free space, which I still have. But I deleted all Dropbox’s software and instead use Maestral, a free extension that does most of the same work but without the hoggish performance.

I use Google Drive, too, and pay for a fairly low storage tier.

To the extent I’ve used it, I really like Sync.com. Unlike those you mention, it’s E2EE (they’re based in Canada but supposedly meet US HIPAA requirements). They also have versioning.

Sadly, nothing can currently replace iCloud on iOS/iPadOS due to Apple’s restrictions.


I found Dropbox reliable when I used it years ago, but prefer Google Drive. Changes sync immediately to/from my Mac, iPhone, and iPad. And Google Workspace Standard comes with 2TB of pooled storage and support for $12/month (per user).

Please share more details about your own storage

I bought a NAS and use their self-hosting cloud software called Synology Drive. Unfortunately, it is not a cheap option, so most people are better off with a commercial service. It works great, and I love knowing I have control of all my data. But again, not cheap, and you have to geek out setting it all up.

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I was hoping you would say Synology because I have a Synology (its 2 years old) but i could setup Synology drive on it. Just trying to figure out whats the experience is like? does it work just as reliabily as Dropbox?

If it can run DSM 7.0 it should work.

I haven’t had to share documents from it, so I can’t speak to that, but it does support it. From a Mac/PC it has worked flawlessly for me. It works the same as any other service, you install the client and it downloads the files as needed. On PC you can have everything downloaded all the time, but I am not sure on Mac. I think it got added in DSM 7.2 for Mac, but since I don’t use it , I don’t know. My files download instantly with no delay.

The only issue with it I have had is on iOS. It works on iOS, but if I edit something, or open a document in a different app, it has to go through the Files app (for instance opening a spreadsheet in Excel, I have to get to the spreadsheet through the Files app, not direct from Synology Drive). Once I save the file and exit it, the Files app will display “Waiting to upload.” The problem is, the only way I can get it to actually upload is to reboot the device. So if you do a lot of document editing on iOS it might not be a good thing. Of course it might just be a problem for me.

Edit to add: the SpaceRex YouTube channel was very helpful in the set up and explaining what it can do when I was setting it up. You might find more info here:

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Since I have a Mac I use as a server, I run Resilio Sync for syncing virtually everything that doesn’t need a specific service.

For specific services:

  • DropBox for Quicken. Free account works fine for this.
  • OmniGroup has its own service that syncs OmniFocus.
  • 1Password has its own service
  • Apple apps use iCloud.

So I see little use for commercial, general syncing services.

This is probably not the answer you’re looking for, but have you considered using AWS S3 (or something like Wasabi, etc) with MountainDuck?

Curious about what Office stuff you use? Isn’t everything free on the web version for office apps. And we have Google Docs which is brilliant and free

I recommend pCloud. I’ve been using it for many years, and it works great. No issues with synchronization. Easy file sharing and the ability to sync any selected folders. Plus, it’s a one-time payment, not a subscription (currently 199 EUR for 500 GB, 399 EUR for 2 TB).

Excel, and it’s worth it for many reasons. I am an accountant and Excel is the standard in my career field. It’s better than Google Sheets. I don’t like web apps and Excel with its billion of keyboard shortcuts is a lot better on desktop. I don’t want Google making money off of my info.


My annual OneDrive contract is coming up for renewal this week and I’m still not decided.

But to further clarify your post, annual Office365 subscriptions are $100 for Family and $80 for individual. The Family option includes 6TB of included OneDrive storage (albeit divided among 6 accounts). Those are the prices direct from MS. With almost no effort, anyone can find better prices for the same O365 package from other vendors. The cost for the OneDrive storage is quite competitive, especially at the Family plan. As you mentioned, the generally more powerful MS Office Suite is included - access to its apps then rivals Apple’s in terms of access, as it too works and syncs on all your devices, but bests Apple in that it is truly device agnostic.

A new possible advantage to O365 is its newly integrated AI, “Copilot.” I haven’t experimented much, so I can’t discuss the differences between the free version and the $20/month version, but I am interested in finding out more. I don’t write as many form-style spreadsheets as I used to, but I could certainly see the advantage of dictating to an integrated AI the requirements for a spreadsheet and having it write that up for me.

You know, thanks for your post. Thinking about it helped me to decide: I will renew the subscription for myself and the 5 others on my account.

For another year, anyway.

But I have been doing a lot more in Numbers at least. We’ll see what Apple is offering next year. I’d prefer to not send anymore to MS, but I’m also not going to cut off my nose to spite my face.

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OneDrive really is a great deal and has really good apps on everything. Word is also really handy for resume stuff (Pages can mess up the formatting when opening the document on a PC in my experience). I can’t imagine using Numbers over Excel ever though. :slight_smile:

Makes sense. When I used Outlook email a few yrs ago, I was able to use Excel and Word on the web for free. Has that changed now? Maybe the online version isn’t as powerful and doesn’t offer pro feature you want.

If i could get Alfred sync to work on my dropbox I would be happy to stick with it. Ive gone back and forth with the devs for a bit and ent over logs but stopped hearing back.