Cloud Storage vs. Local Storage: 13 Differences To Consider Before Making The Pick

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Cloud Storage vs. Local Storage

Are you looking for an ideal storage model? There are two common options to choose from: local storage and cloud storage. In the last decade, data has become a valuable commodity for enterprises. As innovation continues to grow, data generation has grown exponentially.

This increase in data usage now poses a big dilemma to large corporations on where to store it. Most compare cloud storage vs. local storage to see which one is suitable.

On the one hand, you have local storage, which offers better data control and confidentiality. On the other hand, cloud storage provides scalability and remote access. Picking one among them can be complex because your security needs and data size influence the choice.

In this guide, we’ll examine the differences between local storage and cloud storage. We will also compare their pros, cons, cost, and speed. The goal is to help you understand local vs. cloud storage differences to choose one that suits you.

Table of Content

  1. What Is Cloud Storage?
  2. What is Local Storage?
  3. What Is the Difference Between Cloud Storage and Local Storage
  4. Cloud vs. Local Storage: Which One to Choose?
  5. What Enterprise Startups Need to Remember When Choosing a Cloud Storage
  6. Key Takeaways
  7. FAQs

What Is Cloud Storage?

It is a cloud computing model that allows data storage on remote servers. The remote servers are part of the infrastructure owned and maintained by a service provider. One way the provider ensures easy access to data and availability is through private and public connections to the internet. Service providers offer cloud resources to the end user through a subscription service. It makes it a cheaper model, and the best part is it’s easy to scale the storage on demand.

How Cloud Storage Works

Data gets stored in remote servers provided by third-party service providers. You can access the data through an API provided by the service provider and an internet connection. When you log in to their account and upload data, the cloud breaks it into blocks. Then it gets distributed across different servers.

Cloud Storage Benefits

There are several cloud storage benefits that businesses can take advantage of, and they are:

  • Protection: The cloud offers regular data backup, a huge benefit for any user. If your on-premise hardware fails, data recovery is more accessible from the cloud.
  • Cost-effective: Outsourcing data storage minimizes user upkeep and maintenance of the infrastructure. You are only responsible for the payment of resources you use.
  • Accessibility: You only need to connect an internet connection to access the cloud. From there, you can store or share your data even when in remote areas without hitches.
  • Scalability: If your business is growing and you need to scale your resources, the cloud can facilitate it on demand. It’s an advantage on-premise storage doesn’t have.

Types of Cloud Storage

There are three types of cloud storage:

  1. Public Cloud: A service provider offers this model where multiple users share it. The provider is also responsible for the upkeep and management of the infrastructure.
  2. Private Cloud: It is a storage model dedicated to the only organization. The organization or a service provider owns and manages the infrastructure. It is a common storage option for businesses that deal with sensitive data.
  3. Hybrid Cloud: It combines public and private storage offering flexibility and scalability in cloud storage solutions. Companies with varying storage needs will find this model suitable.

Use Cases of Cloud Storage

Some of the common use cases of the cloud are:

  • Collaboration: The cloud is accessible even in remote regions. This accessibility makes the cloud flexible for remote workers to collaborate on projects and decision-making.
  • Data Recovery and Backup: Service providers offer disaster recovery solutions and data backup, which are helpful in a natural disaster.

Also Read: 6 Key Differences: Cloud vs On Premise Computing Revealed!

What is Local Storage?

What is Local Storage?

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Local data is stored on physical mediums like SSDs, HDDs, or USBs. In this storage model, you transfer data to the medium.

Advantages of Local Storage

Some of the standout positives include:

  • Compliance: It provides a safe way to store data and comply with the law.
  • Security Control: The business has complete control, and the IT teams put the security measures they find compelling.
  • Speed and performance: It is faster if the setup is correct and can even have higher speeds than the cloud. The reason is local storage relies on something other than internet speed.
  • Accessibility: Local storage offers easy access to data which is convenient. You have no other requirements.

Storage Options

  • USB: It’s also a flash drive that you can plug into a USB port on a desktop or laptop. Most people use them to back up or transfer data between different machines.
  • SSD: It is an advanced storage device consisting of memory chips. SSDs approach data storage through flash memory.
  • HDD is a storage device that can store a computer’s apps and OS. It’s a crucial component of a computer in its operation.

Local Storage Use Cases

There are several use cases of on-premise storage, and they are:

  • Data Sharing: This is the only storage model close to local storage in sharing and backing up data. All you do is plug it in and start the transfer.
  • Remote Offline Work: It’s easy and convenient to back up your files on local storage models when working remotely. The best part is you don’t need to connect to the internet.
  • Data Recovery and Backup: In case of hardware failure or data breach, it is easy to recover and back up sensitive data.

What Is the Difference Between Cloud Storage and Local Storage

Difference Between Cloud Storage and Local Storage

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Some of the standard cloud storage vs. local storage differences include the following:

Pros Cons
Cloud Storage ●       Accessing and storing data remotely is easy by connecting to the internet.

●       Companies looking for a model to create redundant backups will find it ideal.

●       Scaling is easy; you only need to add a few gigabytes.

●       Companies don’t have to worry about investing in infrastructure.

●       Automated regular backup is handy since you don’t have to do it manually.

●  You don’t have complete control of your data.

●  An internet connection is necessary to access the cloud.

Local Storage ●       You can customize your storage options and security policies.

●       It is a cost-effective model if you have smaller data since USBs and SSDs are cheap.

●       Users don’t have to worry about connecting to the internet to access their data.

●       It offers privacy which is ideal for sensitive data and compliance with the guidelines.

●       You have to invest in infrastructure which is expensive.

●       The risk of natural disasters, theft, and fire makes this model vulnerable.

Cloud vs. Local Storage: Which One to Choose?

Choosing between local storage and cloud storage will narrow down to a company’s goals and what each model offers. Employing local storage means you will back up your company data in SSDs, or HDDs. On the flip side, using a cloud service means you store your company’s data from anywhere and can scale the resources anytime.

Scalability is one of the features of the cloud that makes it appealing to businesses. Businesses can access their data remotely, making it a suitable storage model for remote workers. In addition, it offers high levels of redundancy in case of a cyber threat.

Companies looking for privacy and data control will find local storage ideal. The drawback to this model of storage is you need trained professionals to maintain the infrastructure. In addition, if you have a mobile workforce, it won’t be applicable.

Deciding on physical vs. cloud storage will narrow down to a company’s needs. It includes expertise, budget, and type of data.

What Enterprise Startups Need to Remember When Choosing a Cloud Storage

There are several factors that startups need to consider when using a cloud storage solution, and they include:

  • Go for a hybrid storage option: The nature of a hybrid cloud is to merge public and private clouds. Businesses can benefit when they pick this storage since it offers the best of both worlds.
  • Compliance with the law: It should be a priority for businesses to choose a storage option that meets their needs. If you have sensitive data, on-premise storage is your best bet.
  • Scalability: Any startup should have a strategy in place since they will need more resources as they grow. Also, go for storage options that can accommodate their needs on demand. The cloud is better suited in these instances.
  • Cost-effective: One area that a startup needs to focus on is how to lower operation costs. The cloud suits this scenario because SMEs can pay for only what they use.
  • Set up a plan for data migration and vendor lock-in: Costs and data transfer complexity should be one of the priority things SMEs must consider when migrating to the cloud.
  • Latency and performance requirements: Whether using a cloud or on-premise storage solution, SMEs should plan for backup strategies and data speeds.
  • Pick a reputable and reliable service provider: Companies must research and find a service provider’s history, customer feedback, service guarantees, and more.

Key Takeaways

  • The cloud can be suitable for businesses looking to scale and offer remote collaboration features that on-premises can’t.
  • Instead of comparing cloud vs. physical storage, leveraging a hybrid model combining both solutions can offer the best of both worlds.
  • There are crucial factors to think about when choosing a cloud solution. They include flexibility, compliance, scalability, and more.
  • The cloud has many business benefits, like cost-effectiveness and remote access over on-premises solutions.
  • Companies should prioritize looking for a reliable and reputable cloud service provider that provides features that can protect sensitive data.

At RedSwitches, we offer reliable cloud hosting services that startups will find ideal. With our cloud storage option, you will enjoy the scalability and flexibility that modern businesses need.

To learn more about cloud storage vs. local storage, visit our resources section. In addition, you will find other cloud computing tips and guides to help your business thrive.


Q-1) Is It Cheaper to Store on the Cloud Than Locally?

Yes, cloud systems are often cheaper because you only pay for what you use. However, choosing local vs. cloud storage will depend on the data type that needs storage.

Q-2) Is It Good to Store Data in Local Storage?

Yes, if you have problems with bandwidth limitations and need quick access to your data. SSDs offer fast access, eliminating the time to log in and access the cloud.

Q-3) Can Cloud Data Get Hacked?

Yes, if anyone managed to get your login details. It happens because a user doesn’t have direct control of the data, and only the service provider has complete control.

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