Ask Mr. Noobie

Ask Mr. NoobieQUESTION: What do you think about Shoebox for photo and video storage? – Pat S. from Birmingham, Alabama

ANSWER: There are a ton of services and apps that people can use to back up their photos on their smartphone. iPhone users can use iCloud, Google users can use Google Drive and just about anyone can use Dropbox, just to name a few. But there’s one shortcoming to all of these services. They offer only a limited amount of free storage. If you want more, you have to pay for it.

Shoebox on the other hand, offers free unlimited storage for your photos. Is there a catch? Actually there are two, but they may not bother you.

Shoebox Free Unlimited Photo Backup

The first catch

The first catch is that Shoebox may not upload your photos using their original quality. As of this writing, Shoebox limits the photo quality to 10.6 megapixels. That means if your camera is capable of taking a 14 megapixel photo, it will be slightly downgraded to 10.6 megapixels when it is transferred to Shoebox. If you’re using an iPhone, this is a non-issue as even the newest iPhone 6 only has an 8 megapixel camera.

I told you the catch may not bother you.

I mean, really. 10.6 megapixels is way more than enough to print any kind of standard print, if you even care about printing your photos any more. Only the real die-hards are going to be upset about the downgrade in resolution.

The second catch

The second catch has to do with video. Even though the free Shoebox plan offers free unlimited storage, it’s for photos only. For video, you only get 15 minutes of video backup. That’s not much at all.

But guess what? Just like all of the other services I mentioned, Shoebox lets you upgrade to its pro plan for $5/month. The pro plan is identical to the free plan except that photos are uploaded with their original quality and you get 10 hours of video backup.

Shoebox Free vs. Pro Plan

My advice

Here’s my final advice. If you only take a handful of photos and videos with your phone, stick with iCloud (iPhone only), Google Drive or Dropbox. However, if you take hundreds or thousands of photos and videos and aren’t in to paid video storage, go with Shoebox.

To get started with Shoebox go to shoeboxapp.com or download the app for iPhone/iPad or Android.

Do you have a question for Mr. Noobie®? Submit your question here.

Patric Welch

Patric Welch founded Noobie, Inc. in 2006 to help others effectively choose and use technologies to enhance their work and lives. The catchy company name earned Welch the name of Mr. Noobie®, but, in reality, Welch is an experienced and professional techie. Unlike most techies, Welch evaluates emerging technologies from a noobie’s perspective and provides technology education for all skill levels in a friendly, non-threatening way.
2,841 Noobies Have a Head Start ... Don't Be Left Out!

2,841 Noobies Have a Head Start ... Don't Be Left Out!

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