Best Cloud Storage for Music and Video: 7 Apps Compared

There are services like iTunes where you can purchase and stream commercially available music.

But what if you have music and audio files that you got elsewhere?

If you’re like me, you might have mp3 files that you imported from CDs, lecture recordings, and audio and video files from online courses organized in an external hard drive.

What if you want to be able to listen to them from your mobile device?

Regardless of whether my mobile device actually has enough storage space, I tend to use cloud storage services to listen to my music.

Rather than transferring files between my mobile phone and computer over a USB cable, it’s much more convenient to have my files and folders automatically sync on the cloud.

Then what is the best cloud storage for music, audio, and video?

I’ve put the popular cloud storage services to test and see which one is the most convenient for this use case.

For this post, I won’t be reviewing iTunes or SoundCloud. This post will review specifically cloud storage services that provide a mobile app to stream audio and video.

I listen to music or audio on my mobile phone while doing something else, like house chores. For that reason, the cloud storage app for streaming audio and video meet the following criteria:

  • offline capability
  • background playback
  • autoplay next audio
  • repeat one/repeat all
  • star or favorite a file

Since I’ll be using the online storage service strictly for my listening purposes sharing capability is nice to have, but not a must.

Here’s how the cloud storage apps add up for audio playback.

Best Cloud Storage for Music: pCloud

pCloud is my recommended solution for organizing and listening to your music on the go. It has the most convenient interface for streaming audio on your mobile devices.

What’s unique to pCloud is that it has the ability to update and create playlists within the app.

pCloud offers an annual plan and a one-time payment plan for the lifetime use.

If you have a lot of music and audio files you want to be able to access from anywhere and playback easily, you should consider signing up with their lifetime plans to save money in the long run.

pCloud is free for up to 10 GB of storage.

Audio Video
Background playback Yes No
Autoplay next Yes No
Repeat Repeat all No
File Folder
Link share Yes Yes
Offline Yes Yes
Star Yes Yes
  • Shuffle: Yes, within a playlist
  • Video caption: Yes
  • View all the offline files: No
  • Password lock: Yes

Video playback on pCloud allows you to toggle captions, which is great for someone who wants that added feature.

One thing pCloud lacks in other services is the tab or screen for viewing all the offline files downloaded on the mobile device. Such a feature would be helpful for someone wants to bulk remove the downloaded files from their device.

Mega

I recommend Mega if you want to be able to “listen” to your videos by having them playback in the background. To be precise, after you play a video in Mega and navigate away from the app, it’ll keep playing as picture-in-picture.

This is great when you want to just “listen” to your videos while doing something else. Technically video files could be converted to audio ahead of time to save space on a cloud service.

I consume a lot of online courses and to be honest I don’t have the time to do the conversion. Plus, I just want to be able to switch the phone screen back and forth and watch the video from time to time.

Just make sure you’re streaming your videos over Wi-Fi, or you’re already enrolled in a plan with your telecommunication service provider that won’t cost you too much to stream video over a data network.

Audio Video
Background playback Yes Picture-in-picture
Autoplay next No No
Repeat No No
File Folder
Link share Yes Yes
Offline Yes No
Star No No
  • Video caption: No
  • View all offline files: Yes
  • Passcode lock: Yes


I recommend Mega for video storage and streaming because you get to use their free plan with a generous storage space of 50 GB.

However, because the Mega app does not have the autoplay next feature, it’s not my recommended app for listening to music.

If you have a lot of music and audio that you want to be able to listen on your mobile device, then I’d still go with pCloud’s paid plan — that way you get enough space to store videos as well.

Dropbox

Dropbox has been around for many years and I’m sure many of you have started with it.

Dropbox is my second choice for video playback on a mobile device. Like Mega, after you play a video and navigate away from the app, the video will continue to play picture-in-picture.

You can automatically repeat one audio file, but you cannot repeat all audio files in a folder.

Audio Video
Background playback Yes Picture-in-picture
Autoplay next No No
Repeat 1 only No
File Folder
Link share Yes Yes
Offline Yes Paid only
Star Yes Yes
  • Security Lock: No
  • Offline Tab: Yes


If you want to be able to make a folder offline on Dropbox, you need to upgrade to a paid plan.

Other Cloud Storage Services

I’ve listed other cloud storage services here that are still good for file sharing and storing your files, but I wouldn’t use them for playing back audio or video on your mobile devices due to their limited capabilities.

OneDrive

When you purchase Microsoft Office, like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, you automatically get extra storage space on OneDrive. For that reason, I do use OneDrive mainly for business, but its mobile app is not optimal for audio and video enjoyment.

Audio Video
Background playback Yes No
Autoplay next No No
Repeat No No
File Folder
Link share Yes Yes
Offline Yes Yes
Favorite No No
  • Security Lock: No
  • View all offline files: No
  • Video Captions: Yes

Google Drive

Google Drive allows you to add comments to individual files on your mobile, so if you’re listening to a lecture recording then you can jot down quick notes and attach comments to the audio itself.

Audio Video
Background playback Yes No
Autoplay next No No
Repeat No No
File Folder
Link share Yes Yes
Offline Yes No
Star Yes Yes
  • View all offline files: No
  • Security Lock: Yes
  • Comment on each file: Yes

Box

One unique feature about Box is that it has a “collection” feature. You can put individual files and folders into a collection that you can use for another layer of organization.

Audio Video
Background playback Yes No
Autoplay next Yes No
Repeat No No
File Folder
Link share Yes Yes
Offline Yes No
Favorite Yes No
  • Video Caption No
  • Passcode Lock: No

Currently, the Box app has a bug — if you play a video, and if you navigate and play audio in the Box app it’ll continue to play both files instead of automatically stopping one to playback the other.

Ice Drive

I like how simple Ice Drive’s interface look. Their service focuses on privacy and they also offer lifetime plans, making them somewhat similar to pCloud.

However, there aren’t any significant extra features for audio and video streaming.

Audio Video
Background playback No No
Autoplay next No No
Repeat No No
File Folder
Link share Yes Yes
Offline Yes No
Favorite Yes Yes

Verdict

My top choice for the cloud storage app for audio and video playback on the mobile devices is pCloud.

If you get pCloud’s lifetime plan, you’ll have more than enough space to store your audio and video files. In terms of features, it has the best audio playback interface out of all apps listed here.

For video playback, you could go with Mega since it gives you a lot of storage space on the free plan, but its audio playback feature is limited. Dropbox comes second for video playback for its picture-in-picture feature.

If pCloud supports background playback or picture-in-picture for videos, it would be the only app I’d use for streaming audio and video on my mobile device.

What do you think?

Are there other online cloud storage service with an excellent mobile app for media streaming? Let me know in the comments.

About Sushi

Hi, I'm Sushi. I started this blog to share productivity tips and tools to stay organized as a remote worker.

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