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Amazon provides Dropbox alternative for Android users

15
The Amazon Cloud Drive Photos app displays and sorts pictures in a very similar way to the standard Android Gallery app.

The Dropbox automatic photo upload feature is a real blessing if you work with smartphones a lot. You take a picture or a screenshot and within seconds it appears on your PC's Dropbox folder, ready for use in your content management system, without any cables or other types of physical connection needed. Of course this also means your photos are safely and securely stored in the cloud. If your device is lost or stolen you'll at least have your valuable pictures. Google (via the Plus app) and Facebook (in its iOS app) is providing similar services.

With this latest update the Amazon Cloud Photos app has joined the ranks of apps capable of automatically uploading photos to the cloud. It comes with 5GB of free storage but more can be purchased, from 20GB for US$10 per year to 1000GB for US$500 per year).

By default images are uploaded automatically after they've been captured, but you can switch to manual upload if you only want to sync specific pictures or folders to the cloud. Wi-Fi only upload is also enabled by default, but those of you with an unlimited data plan can untick the box in the settings.

The new version also gains a camera button but it only serves to open any of the camera apps already installed on your device. It's also hidden in the settings menu which somehow limits its usefulness. Overall these updates make the Amazon app a viable alternative to Dropbox and the other solutions mentioned above but arguably a switch makes most sense for current users of the Amazon Cloud service.

In the folder view you can switch between cloud and device content.
Wi-Fi only upload and auto upload options can be found in the menu.
The camera button is only a link to any camera app already installed ont he device.
Upload status is visible in the notification tray.

 

Comments

Total comments: 15
Stanley123

I have been using Dropbox and in comparison, I have found it a better solution. Not only photos but my documents are all sorted out and I don't have to worry about tracking or organizing my files. For example, I take photos or receive documents via email and store those on in my Dropbox. It automatically syncs with my PC at home and whenever, I want to view or edit my files, I open my Dropbox files via GroupDocs document management solution and work on my files on the go. The whole process is just easy and less time consuming and I don't need to be on my PC all the time. You should check out more about Dropbox integrations from here:

http://groupdocs.com/blog/groupdocs-document-management/archive/2012/08/15/announcing-dropbox-integration-with-groupdocs-apps-suite.html

Comment edited 2 times, last edit -209 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
gardengal4

I gave it a shot, but uninstalled it. I didn't find that it was a viable alternative to dropbox for me. Viewing pics was slow as molasses. I would have had to upload all the existing pics on my phone to get auto-upload mode and I didn't care to do that. I couldn't direct the upload to a cloud folder of my choice. Could not de-select or select-all pics. Could not share a pic to standard share-able objects. The desktop app was not what I expected either and not nearly as functional as dropbox which is well integrated into Windows Explorer. Could be useful for someone who is vested in Amazon Cloud Drive already, but not worth switching from dropbox for me.

0 upvotes
fireplace33

Yes , it seems many features that one might expect as standard, for something like this ,are just not there :-( Pity.
Also doesn't seem to be possible to share a particular photo directly from the mobile phone. Or did I miss that?. I had to wait until I returned to a desktop to share the link, which sort of defeats the object of being able to send someone a photo while still out & away from home.
I guess this app will be improved with future updates. But when?

0 upvotes
fireplace33

Loaded the app on my smartphone and could upload photos to the amazon cloud drive even before I returned home from the walk :-)
I later visited the cloud drive on the amazon site and wanted to share this entire folder of 5 photos by creating a link (from my desktop -Using firefox) but it only allowed the creation of a single image file , not the whole folder?
Is a link for the whole folder possible ? without that it would be quite tiresome to create a whole bunch of separate links.

0 upvotes
Runnicle

Exactly the same problem for me too. Because photos in a folder can be viewed automatically as a slide show, whereas links to individual photos take much too much time to create, send, and then to view by the recipient. So, no link to folder is a BIG problem!

0 upvotes
Lee Jay

Dropbox is a total bust for me for one reason - if someone sends me something via their dropbox, I have to join Dropbox and get my own account to use it. I've joined a couple times, got what I needed and then deleted my account but that's a crazy hassle. Do any of the others solve this problem of the likes of Dropbox and Facebook?

0 upvotes
Lars Rehm

Why are you recreating a new account each time? Just keep it and you don't have to do it again :-) Seriously, to me dropbox is one of the most useful web innovations in recent years. Sending links to files to others is just one aspect. I find it even more useful that all my important files are accessible from any of my devices at any time. I edit on one device and all the edits are synced. You buy a new computer and there's no need to worry about transferring files because it is all in the cloud...and all that free of charge. I am not sure if there was ever a better deal :-)

2 upvotes
Lee Jay

Because I don't want to have yet another account with yet another user name and password floating around when it's not useful. This sort of cloud storage is pretty useless to those like me that have terabytes of important files and might go through hundreds of gigabytes a day of exceptionally slow bandwidth (compared to a SATA local hard drive) to get at them. Plus, none of my devices other than my laptop can run Lightroom and even if they could the catalog has to be local. Further accessing a multigigabyte LR catalog over anything slower than local storage would be horribly slow.

0 upvotes
Lars Rehm

I don't use it for images as I, like yourself, have too many terabytes of them. I am sure my pictures will be in the cloud in the future but not yet. However, I have all my other digital documents in there, just makes life easier if you always know where to find them, no matter what device you use or where you are.

Most services like dropbox won't let you access their servers without logging on first, after all that's what their business model is based on - users.

0 upvotes
Lee Jay

My other digital documents are 60GB, including no media.

This having to have an account stuff is why I don't use facebook or any of these services. I don't have to have an account on DPReview to read the articles or the forums, just to contribute.

0 upvotes
PhotoKhan

Using it now. Just great.

0 upvotes
Donald Duck

Can you download (sync) images from the cloud?

0 upvotes
Lars Rehm

Yes, you tap and hold an image that shows up in one of the cloud folders and you get the option to download to the device. This works with folders too.

0 upvotes
bloodycape

Can it be used for videos too. What about any limitations of file size?

0 upvotes
Lars Rehm

Ok, I've just played a little more with it and it appears you cannot upload videos with the mobile app. Videos aren't displayed at all in the app, neither the device folder nor the cloud folder. You can however upload videos into the Amazon Cloud Drive via the desktop app. Once you start uploading with the mobile app this creates a folder within the pictures folder of the Cloud Drive that includes all your image from the mobile device you used. Basically the mobile app only gives you access to the Pictures folder in the Amazon Cloud drive which is a little unusual to be honest. I am sure we'll find out what the next version looks like before too soon :-)

1 upvote
Total comments: 15
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