Sunday, March 22, 2015

Microsoft OneDrive and Microsoft SkyDrive: What's the Fuss?

Microsoft OneDrive vs SkyDrive


Microsoft OneDrive and SkyDrive refers to the same cloud storage service (online storage service) provided by Microsoft and, in fact, there is no difference between them in the service they provide. It’s only a name change. Initially, Microsoft’s cloud storage service was called SkyDrive but later, due to a lawsuit that arose due to using of word “sky,” which breached the trademark of British Sky Broadcasting Group (BSkyB), Microsoft had to rebrand the service as OneDrive. So OneDrive is the latest name given to the former name SkyDrive. Now the name SkyDrive is no longer being used.

Microsoft SkyDrive:

In 2007, Microsoft introduced its cloud storage service under the name “Windows Live Folders” where it is an online storage space that the users who created an account got several Gigabytes of space. 

Later, by the end of August 2007, the name was changed to SkyDrive and continued that name until the name was changed as OneDrive in 2014. To get a SkyDrive, account users should create a Microsoft Live account. 

Initially, some free spaces of about 7 GB was provided (Currently users get 15 GB). If extra space is needed, they can be obtained by paying. To upload and download files, a web interface has been provided and it is supported by all major browsers such as Internet Explorer, Firefox and Google Chrome. Apart from the browser interface, client applications exist for various operating systems such as Windows, Windows Phone, iOS, Mac OSX, and Android where they allow synchronization of files in the local SkyDrive Folder with the online SkyDrive storage. 

From Windows 8, Microsoft introduced SkyDrive features into the operating system itself where a metro application came inbuilt into the distribution and also latest Office products such as Office 2013 can work directly on the SkyDrive. In addition, SkyDrive is linked with Office Web applications where users can create office documents in the SkyDrive and, on the fly, use them directly from the web browser itself. 

Apart from the normal SkyDrive, an enterprise service called SkyDrive Pro exists where that gives larger storage capacities integrated with more advanced features for business users. Users get several options to do with the files. One is, they can keep their files private. Another option is that they can share the file with others using a link. The next option is one can make a file publicly appear on web. Users can select whether a file is read-only to others users or whether it is editable.

Microsoft OneDrive:

Microsoft OneDrive (previously SkyDrive, Windows Live SkyDrive and Windows Live Folders) is a file hosting service that allows users to upload and sync files to a cloud storage and then access them from a web browser or their local device.

The concept behind the name OneDrive is spelled out pretty clearly by the refreshed service’s tagline: one place for everything in your life. “One place for all of your photos and videos. One place for all of your documents,” Microsoft said in its first OneDrive blog post. “One place that is seamlessly connected across all the devices you use.”

It is the latest name given for SkyDrive where the name change happened in February 2014. In 2013, British Sky Broadcasting Group (BSkyB), which is a British telecommunications company, filed a lawsuit against Microsoft for using the word “sky. ” After high court decided that Microsoft breached the trademark of Sky Broadcasting Corporation by using word “sky,” Microsoft settled down the case by deciding to drop the name. Then they named their service (rebranded) as OneDrive where SkyDrive became OneDrive and SkyDrive Pro became OneDrive for Business. Only the name was changed and there was no change to services or features. 

OneDrive is Microsoft's competition to Google Drive and Apple's iCloud, attempting to be the place where customers can manage their files on the cloud from anywhere. The name change to OneDrive from SkyDrive doesn't change the overall meaning of what Microsoft is pursuing in the cloud: your one stop shop for file access - old name or new name.

OneDrive is free, personal online storage that you can choose to use at home, work, or school. Your files are available from any device by going to the OneDrive website or using the OneDrive mobile app for your phone. 

Now nearly a year has passed since the name change and Microsoft added and modified features during this time. Currently, OneDrive provides the service of 15 GB of free storage for new users.. Office 365 users would get unlimited storage. The current web interface is a cleanly built interface using latest HTML 5.

The main difference between Microsoft OneDrive and SkyDrive:
  • Microsoft SkyDrive is a storage service introduced by Microsoft in 2007. In 2014, the name of the service was changed due to a lawsuit and the new name is OneDrive.
  • OneDrive is improving on SkyDrive, there's really no bad way to spin it. If you were a SkyDrive user in the past, you probably won't mind the rebranding and new features.

The cloud storage service started by Microsoft in 2007 had the name “SkyDrive” but, in 2013, after a lawsuit filed by British Sky Broadcasting Company regarding the usage of word “Sky,” Microsoft had to drop the name SkyDrive. Then, in 2014, they re-branded the service under the name OneDrive. Hence, SkyDrive and OneDrive refers to the same service but the current name is OneDrive.

Article and Image Source: OneDrive and SkyDrive logos via Wikipedia

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