pCloud Review (2021) – Why I Bought The Lifetime Plan?

pCloud is one of the most popular cloud storage option out here. They are mostly famous for their lifetime plans and privacy friendly policies.

For this pCloud Review, I have conducted speed tests, checked out its file functions, sync options, security features, and analysed its performance on different devices.

After days of testing and researching, I am finally here with the facts.

pCloud is a powerful cloud storage service with lots of features but the one thing that bugged me was Add Ons. More on the details later..

I’ve bought the pCloud lifetime 2 TB Plan for my primary cloud storage. This pCloud review will be based on that.

What exactly made me buy pCloud? Let’s find out in this review.

pCloud Review

Kripesh Adwani

pcloud-logo
Ease of Use
Privacy
Sharing
Pricing
Sync

Summary

It’s a perfect package of privacy, speed, sharing options and sync functionalities. I love pCloud.

4.4

Disclaimer : I strongly believe in transparency. If you buy using the links on our site, we may earn a small commission without any extra cost to you. This helps me to keep producing honest reviews. Read More >>

About pCloud 

pCloud AG is a Switzerland-based company launched in 2013. It has garnered over 10 million users in the last few years. Switzerland is not a part of any intelligence alliances (not included in 14 eyes) and holds strict laws for privacy and security, which makes pCloud quite safe to use!

With a free pCloud account, you get 10 GB of free storage space which can be unlocked by completing tasks like installing the desktop app, verifying your email id, etc.

pcloud

Data Centers

If you register with a new account, you get to choose from two different server locations – USA and Europe.

pcloud data centers

Do you know that the USA is a major participant in various intelligence agencies like the 5 Eyes and 9 Eyes that share access to their users’ data and information? I don’t think this is safe for sensitive data from the privacy point. 

Recently, they have also set up their data centers in Europe. This should be your preferred server location because the privacy, security and speeds of the European servers are much better. Also, if you live in India then Europe is going to be the best server for speed and privacy.

I’m happy that they provide an option to choose the server while signup. Other cloud storage companies don’t provide that option.

Speed 

The upload and download speeds of pCloud are quite good for a cloud storage service. I tried uploading and downloading an 824 MB video file with a network speed of 100 MB/s and these are the results!

pcloud speeds

While doing testing for pCloud Review I got the following results

  • Upload Time: 2 min 17 sec
  • Download Time: 3 min 15 sec

I got similar results with pCloud Crypto as well. (Wondering what that is? Keep reading to find out!)

I have tested these results from India and in my opinion these speeds are quite impressive!

What do you think? Do let me know in the comments section below.

Zero-Knowledge Encryption 

In today’s scenario, online security is an issue of prime importance. A little negligence can cause all your data to be compromised within seconds! This is where pCloud Crypto comes into play.

It offers an optional Zero Knowledge Encryption which makes your data inaccessible to anyone except you. It is the most secure encryption method.

 

pcloud zero knowledge encryption

When you protect your sensitive data with their encryption key called Crypto Pass, nobody (including the hackers, the cloud storage service, or even the owner of the company) can ever access your data! 

Only way to decrypt your data will be your master password.

However, availing this service costs $5/month.

Versioning (File Revisions)

If you work on long-term projects frequently, you will agree that versioning is an indispensable feature for a good cloud storage.

Versioning lets you track, preview, and recover the older versions of your files from the last 30 days.

pcloud versioning

As someone who works on documents a lot, I found this feature extremely useful. 

If you wish to extend the file revision limit for up to 360 days, you can purchase the Extended File History as an add-on too. (pCloud is full of add ons)

Trash 

The trash folder stores your deleted files for a duration of 30 days.

pcloud trash

But, in case you wish to extend the trash limit, you can purchase the Extended File History as an add-on for $39/year.

pCloud Rewind Feature 

In case of emergencies like accidental deletion of your important files, or corruption of data because of a virus, the Rewind feature helps recover and restore previous versions of your account to any date and time in the past 30 days.

pcloud rewind

You can extend this limit to 360 days, if you opt for the Extended File history add-on.

User Interface

I found the interface of pCloud to be very decent and easy to use. It comprises a smooth drag-and-drop upload feature, neat file sorting, and file arrangement options like grid view and list view.

pcloud interface

The interesting part is that all the options are available in its web interface itself, so you don’t need the desktop app to operate it.

The desktop apps for Windows, MAC, and Linux are also easy to use.

pcloud desktop app

Mobile apps are available for Android, iOS and iPad devices, featuring all the important options along with Dark mode and passcode protection. 

I would have liked it more if they included bio metric option also. Like fingerprint or face id.

pcloud mobile

The superior design of the mobile apps gives it a premium touch. Folder management options are very cool! 

You can create folders inside folders, edit, rename, copy, move, bookmark, share, or trash files as you like! A search bar to easily locate your files is an added advantage.

All in all, I found its mobile apps to be quite complete and handy. 

pCloud Drive 

Struggling with disk space on your desktop? Here comes the pCloud Virtual Drive

As soon as you install the pCloud desktop application, you get a pCloud virtual drive that does not take up any space on your system. It’s truly like an external hard drive attached to your device! 

pcloud drive

Directly copy, paste, move, or delete items in this drive, and all the changes will be synced on the cloud storage. I really like this feature a lot!

But the only downside is that you need an internet connection in order to access the pCloud drive. It doesn’t load if you are offline.

Sync 

pCloud provides very smooth and quick sync options. With the Selective Sync feature, you can select the folders from your device you want to sync on the cloud.

pcloud sync

Any changes made to these folders will automatically be updated in the pCloud drive.

Meaning: If you add new data it will be synced to your cloud storage. If you delete it will be deleted from cloud as well.

With selective sync I can manually select folders which I want to sync.

In my experience sync feature works flawlessly. I was able to sync my photos folder as well as my Android Studio projects.

For mobile devices, there is automatic backup for photos.

It supports block level sync also. Means only changes will be uploaded to the cloud, which helps in making fast syncs.

Pcloud is one of the best when it comes to sync.

Devices 

pCloud supports all devices including desktop apps for Windows, Mac and Linux, mobile apps for Android, iOS and iPad, and browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox and Opera.  

pcloud devices

It also has a powerful web version that includes all its major features. Except sync since that needs an app.

Customer Service 

pCloud has a Help Center where you can find informative articles on 50+ topics. 

pcloud help center

Sadly, you get no live chat support with pCloud. For resolving queries, you only have email support. 

pcloud support

Doing this pCloud review I had many queries for which I contacted the support team. On an average they took 1-2 days to reply.

In my experience their customer support is not fast, but it definitely is knowledgeable.

Sharing

One of my most favourite features on pCloud is its File Sharing capabilities.

pcloud sharing

You get a variety of customization options while sharing links with other users, like:

  1. Selecting who can upload files to a shared folder (Nobody, anybody, or selected emails)
  2. Securing the shared data using a password.
  3. Setting an expiration date on the shared link. 
  4. Adding your own brand cover, logo, and text to the shared link using Branding pages.

Checking link statistics like how many people:

  • Opened the link
  • Viewed the link
  • Downloaded the shared data
  • Uploaded data to the folder
pcloud shared tab

Under the Shared tab, you will find two options – Links and Folders to keep track of all your shared items. Having a separate shared tab helps in keeping a track on what we have shared.

With its superior sharing options, pCloud proves to be a powerful remote working tool for sharing!

Fair Share feature 

This is a unique and helpful feature for collaborating with other pCloud users. Fair Share lets users upload as much data as they want to a shared folder, without it taking up any space on their own cloud. 

All the storage space is consumed on the account that shared the folder. 

For example if I’ve shared a folder with my coworker, then if they upload any file, it will be counted against my storage quota.

Features:

Backups 

pCloud lets you easily create a backup of your social media accounts and drives. You can connect services like Google Drive, Dropbox, Facebook, Instagram, and OneDrive to it and automatically backup all the uploaded data.

pcloud social media backups

This is helpful in case your account gets deleted or is inaccessible. All your data will be safely stored in the pCloud Backup folder.

An interesting update: pCloud is also working on implementing the WordPress websites backup feature! Soon, you will be able to back up all your WordPress data on pCloud. I am really looking forward to this feature!

Resize Files

When downloading files from the cloud storage, you can also resize them according to your preference using the ‘Download Converted’ button. 

pcloud resize

There is no limit to the file size that you can convert.

Apart from resizing this feature helps in downloading images quickly with less file size.

File Request 

If you wish to request files from non-pCloud users, the File Request feature can be of great help.

pcloud file request

All you need to do is create a folder and invite users to upload files to it through a link. People only need to provide their name and directly start uploading their files.

I use this feature a lot with photo albums. After a trip with friends I usually create a folder, upload photos from my phone and then use request files feature to allow my friends to upload.
My friends also love this since they don’t need to register and they can directly upload to my folders.

Branding Page

The Branding Page feature is perfect for companies and professionals. While requesting files from your clients, you can use a custom branding page and add details like your company logo, cover image, and description.

pcloud branding pages

This might help you in appearing more professional!

pCloud Public Folder 

If you wish to create your own HTML website on their URL, this is a pretty cool feature to try out! Basically, pCloud lets you use its storage as a hosting service where you can host your static HTML website.

pcloud public folder

The public folder can also be used to embed image files and create direct links to your files. However, this feature is only available in the Premium plans. 

Documents 

pCloud is very versatile with handling documents. It can open and view word files, docx files, PDFs, Excel sheets, PowerPoint Presentations, and more. 

pcloud documents

The only drawback is a lack of in-built functionality for editing documents. You can only preview them!

If you are using pCloud Drive then you can edit files on your system with your native softwares. On web you cannot edit files, only preview option is there.

Playback Features 

Uploading and streaming audio and video files has never been easier! pCloud features integrated media players for both, and it’s especially impressive for playing audio files. 

pcloud playback audio

They have their own integrated music player where you can sort your files by songs, artists, albums, and also create playlists! You can keep songs, albums or playlists on loop, or shuffle them. It’s a pretty exceptional music player.

If you are looking for a cloud storage for music then I must say pCloud is the only good option out there.

Plus, the pCloud app is one of the best options available after Google Drive for photos storage. It is more privacy friendly also.

Security 

You get AES 256 bit encryption here, which is one of the most secure encryption methods used today. It is an industry standard encryption which is used by most companies.

For extra privacy, Two Factor Authentication features are also available.

pcloud security

You can use the Google Authenticator app as well as your mobile number to receive OTPs while logging into your account.

It also provide codes via notification. If pCloud is already installed in my system and I’m trying to install in my phone then it will send me a security code on my system. Without that security code I won’t be able to install it in my phone.

pCloud Crypto 

pCloud Crypto is a zero-knowledge encryption provided by pCloud, which ensures whatever data you upload on the cloud cannot be read by anyone else except you.

Basically pCloud Crypto is just a fancy term for zero-knowledge encryption. 

With pCloud Crypto no one will be able to decrypt your data without your password. Even if your data gets leaked or hacked it cannot be decrypted.

For privacy enthusiasts who want top-notch security for storing their sensitive data, pCloud Crypto is an excellent option. 

pcloud crypto

Once you opt for this encryption, you get a secure Crypto folder in your pCloud drive that can only be unlocked with a passcode you set, called as Crypto Pass.

pcloud crypto pass

A few months ago, they had also come up with the pCloud Crypto Hacking Challenge, where they openly invited people from esteemed universities and institutes to hack the Crypto encryption technology. 

pcloud encryption challenge

 

But nobody could break it, which proves it to be one of the most secure encryption techniques. If you wish to avail this feature, you need to pay some extra charges.

Privacy Policy 

Their Privacy Policy clearly states that they collect the users’ IP addresses. This is common for all Cloud Storage companies. But for an enhanced security, they also provide you an optional Zero Knowledge encryption at an extra charge.

Following are the major points to note:

  • They collect your email address, billing information, plus other data like page views, device information, operating system used, pages visited, etc.
  • They don’t share or sell your personal information to third parties.
  • They can disclose your personal information to the government in certain scenarios.
  • They take preventive measures to secure your unencrypted data and also inform you in case it’s hacked.

pCloud Backup

pCloud recently introduced backup options in 2021. Basically it’s the same sync feature on steroids. With pCloud Backup you can backup your whole system.

Any change that we make will be synced pCloud account. Good thing is that there are no file size or speed limits.

I tried this feature and as of March 2021 backup solution is good. But there is no direct restore option. You can download the files and then arrange it as you want.

pcloud backup

Backup solution does support block-level sync so speeds are good. With block-level sync only changes will be updated in cloud.

pCloud Transfer

pCloud Transfer is a service by pCloud which helps to transfer files upto 5 gb without registration.

I use this service when I want to send huge email attachments.

If you want to know the exact steps to transfer then you can read my guide here.

Do remember that the transfer files will expire in 7 days. You have 7 days of validity.

Pricing

pcloud pricing plans

pCloud features four types of plans. Let us check them out. 

  • Monthly Plans: 500 GB storage for $4.99 and 2 TB storage for $9.99
  • Annual Plans: 500 GB storage for $47.88 and 2 TB storage for $95.88
  • Lifetime Plans: 500 GB storage for $175 and 2 TB storage for $350
  • Family Lifetime Plan: 2 TB storage for $500 (5 Users)

Check the latest pCloud Pricing here.

I have purchased the 2 TB lifetime plan, which I think is the best value for money option. 

Fun fact: You will recover the entire cost of purchasing the lifetime plan in around 4 years and then you can keep using the 2 TB cloud storage completely free for life!

For an extra layer of security, you can purchase pCloud Crypto for $47.88/ year or go with the lifetime plan for $125!

But, if you are unsure about making such a huge investment right now, I’ve got an interesting offer for you. It is way better than any pCloud coupon code out there.

pcloud promo code link

If you click on this link, you can get 500 GB Cloud Space for 90 days at just $4.99! This would be great to test out pCloud and decide if it is worth your money.

Pros 

Strong Syncing Features

Syncing features of pCloud is one of the best out there. It comes with Selective sync and Block-Level Sync functionality.

Fast Speeds

With Europe servers pCloud is now able to provide better speeds all over the globe.

Powerful File sharing Options

Sharing your files with others becomes very simple and secure with pCloud. You can edit upload permission, set password and expiry dates on shared links, check link statistics, and much more!

Affordable Pricing

pCloud comes at a great price point. Its lifetime plans are truly value for your money!

Data Center Selection

With new account registrations, you get the option to select the data center location of your choice. Europe is the preferred option for most users.

Zero Knowledge Encryption

You get an Optional Zero-Knowledge Encryption. pCloud is one of the few cloud storage that lets the user decide which files should be zero-knowledge encrypted. Also, it supports both encrypted and unencrypted files.

Free Trial

pCloud offers a 14-days free trial of its services. So, you can check it out if you’re not sure about investing in its paid plans right now. Also with my pCloud Coupon you can can get 90 days for just $5.

Decent Interface

The user interface of pCloud is decent, organized, and pretty easy to use. 

Auto-Backup

If enabled, pCloud can automatically backup your social media accounts and drives, so you don’t need to worry about losing your data anymore.

Rewind Feature

In case of accidental deletion or corruption of your precious files, pCloud’s Rewind feature lets you restore your account to any point in the past 30 days.

Built-in Media Players

Pcloud media players is one on the best when it comes to music streaming.

Available for all Devices

pCloud is available for all devices, including your laptop, PC, mobile, and tablet. It also features a powerful web version, so, you can easily access it anywhere and anytime!

Cons 

pCloud is for sure a very powerful and efficient cloud storage service, but it has some Cons that you cannot overlook!

Extra Charges for Add-ons

To use its additional features like pCloud Crypto or Extended File History, you need to pay an additional amount. 

No Editing

pCloud does not have any in-built features for file editing. Users can only preview their documents here.

Slow Support

Support is good but it is not the fastest out there.

Conclusion

In my opinion, pCloud is a totally value-for-money option and I would highly recommend it to the Indian users. 

With pCloud, you get the European servers that guarantee a better speed, improved performance & good privacy. Its lifetime plans are decently priced, and the security features are solid too.

This is why I feel pCloud should be the go-to option for most users. If you live in India then it provides the perfect balance between speed and privacy.

In my opinion
If you are looking for an all-rounder Cloud Storage service, then pCloud is the one to serve your needs!

If you are not sure then try with for 90 days with my pCloud Coupon for just $5. Then decide it for yourself.

I hope you found this pCloud review article helpful in deciding if pCloud is worth your time and money. Have you used pCloud before? Let me know your experiences with it in the comments section below.

Also, if you wish to stay updated with more such interesting articles, then do not forget to subscribe to my Newsletter

This is Kripesh signing off. I’ll be back with another article soon. Take care, guys, and keep learning! 🙂

FAQ

What is pCloud Drive?

pCloud uses European servers, which guarantee better privacy and speed to users.

They also have a zero knowledge encryption called pCloud Crypto for sensitive files.
I believe pCloud is a good cloud storage for 2021 at the right price.

Is pCloud safe to use?

pCloud is a company based in Switzerland, which is not a part of any intelligence agencies. It is outside of 14 eyes.

It also uses the AES 256 bit encryption method, so your data remains extremely secure. 

Additionally, pCloud also gives you the option to protect your data with their zero knowledge encryption called pCloud Crypto.  

So yes, pCloud is safe to use.

What is the best cloud storage for personal use?

pCloud comes with good privacy, speed and excellent sharing options. Which makes it a strong contender for personal use in cloud storage.

Can pCloud see my files?

If you avail the pCloud Crypto feature, which is their zero-knowledge encryption, nobody can see your files!

pCloud vs Dropbox?

If you are looking for better team collaboration and file editing features, then Dropbox should be preferred.
Whereas, pCloud is best for file sharing and for uploading your personal data with enhanced privacy.

pCloud Review India

pCloud is one of the best cloud storage services for the Indian audience.
Its data centers are located in Europe, which is great in terms of speed for Indian users.
pCloud provides a good package of security and features to Indian audience.
pCloud is the Best Cloud Storage in India for 2021.

What is pCloud Drive?

pCloud drive is a virtual drive that you get after installing the pCloud desktop application.
It does not take up any space on your device and works like an external hard drive attached to your computer.
It offers very smooth and advanced syncing options, but the only drawback is that you need an internet connection to operate it.

pCloud Lifetime offer?

pCloud features two lifetime offers:
500 GB cloud storage for $175
2 TB cloud storage for $350
I have purchased the 2 TB Lifetime plan which is totally worth the money!

Where are pCloud servers located?

pCloud used to have its servers in the USA. But in the last year, they have also set up their data centers in Europe, which is much better in terms of security and speed. 
A plus point of pCloud is that if you register a new account, it gives you the option to select your preferred server location.

What is pCloud Crypto?

pCloud Crypto is an optional zero knowledge encryption provided by pCloud for an extra charge of $5/month. It provides top-notch security for your important data. 

How Long Has pCloud Been in Business?

pCloud is a Switzerland based company which was launched in 2013. Since then, it has managed to gather over 10 million users and is growing at a great pace!

How fast is pCloud? 

I tried uploading an 824 MB video file on pCloud with a connection  speed of 100 MB/s.
I received an upload time of 2 min 17 sec, and the download time was 3 min 15 sec!
These speed tests were done from India.
In my opinion, pCloud does provide excellent speeds.

Is pCloud blocked in China?

pCloud can be accessed in China but it does block at times. So, using a VPN service would be preferred. 

How reliable is pCloud?

All of the files you store in pCloud are secured with the 256-bit AES method of encrypting during and after transfer. In addition, upon transfer, pCloud also applies TLS/SSL channel protection.
As per pCloud, after your data is uploaded onto the pCloud servers, they keep 5 copies on at least three server locations in a highly secure data storage center, monitored 24/7.
So yes, pCloud is secure and reliable. 

Is pCloud secure?

With fast and secure European servers, an AES 256 bit encryption standard, and an optional pCloud Crypto encryption, I think pCloud is definitely good in terms of security.
 
As per pCloud, all of the files you store in pCloud are secured with 256-bit AES method of encrypting during and after transfer. In addition, upon transfer, pCloud also applies TLS/SSL channel protection.

pcloud-logo

 pCloud Pros (+)

  • Sync Feaatures
  • Speed
  • Privacy Policy
  • Pricing
  • Sharing Option

 pCloud Cons (-)

  • Add Ons
  • No Editing

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