Dropbox raises prices, limits file retention
A few weeks ago, Dropbox® announced two new features for its file sync and share service: Paper, a document collaboration tool; and Smart Sync, a file access service. At the same time, they updated their plans and pricing, moving several features designed to help businesses administer file sharing to more costly plans. Companies using or considering Dropbox should take note that these changes will make it more expensive to manage and control their employees’ sharing activities and will limit the ability to preserve critical business data stored on the service.
Key Dropbox management features moved to higher-end plans
The Dropbox for Business plan has been renamed the Standard plan and is priced the same ($15 per user per month for a month-to-month contract). However, key administrative management features were moved out of the Standard plan to a new and more costly Advanced plan. Features now only available in the Advanced $25 per user per month plan include:
- Tiered Administrator Roles – multiple administrator roles with different permissions
- Sign In As User – allows administrators to sign in to an end user’s Dropbox account
- Audit Log
- HIPAA compliance
Another important change is the introduction of limits on how long files versions are retained. Whereas Dropbox used to offer unlimited file version history, they’ve now throttled it to 120 days across all plans (although current customers can opt in to retain unlimited version history). This means that companies using Dropbox as their primary file storage will only be able to restore files that were deleted or overwritten within the last 4 months.
Dropbox, alone, may not fully preserve critical business data
These changes are interesting. It appears that Dropbox is betting that businesses will be willing to pay an additional $10 per user per month (a total of $25 per user per month) to get access to advanced management and control features. This may present a difficult tradeoff between full control over data and users and paying a much higher price point.
On the other hand, the introduction of file history limits across all plans severely curtails the file preservation functionality of Dropbox, so companies concerned about data preservation will need to add a separate file backup service to ensure full protection.
For MSPs and VARs, who typically would manage such data on behalf of their customers, these tradeoffs may be amplified, especially for those partners who are trying to convince customers to move from the consumer-grade free Dropbox service.
Even for businesses that opt for the higher-end Advanced or Enterprise plans, there is no ability to easily and quickly restore a large number of Dropbox files. So, in case of a ransomware attack or other type of large data loss event, someone – a user, an administrator, or partner – will have to restore affected data on a file by file basis.
SecuriSync: One secure solution for file management
Businesses looking to provide employees with mobile file access and collaboration without having to sacrifice control or limit data preservation should consider SecuriSync® backup and file sharing. SecuriSync starts at $4.99 per user and includes unlimited file version history across all plans, the ability to roll back a large number of files to any point in time with just one click, and many more management and control features. See how SecuriSync compares to the new Dropbox Standard Plan:
|SecuriSync Unlimited||Dropbox Standard|
|Price – retail||$14.99||$15|
|Version history||Unlimited||120 days|
|Admin file mgmt.||Inc.||N/A|
SecuriSync is either a trademark or registered trademark of Intermedia.net, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries. Dropbox is a trademark of Dropbox, Inc.