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Amazon Cloud Drive Adds File Syncing, Takes on Dropbox

There's a disturbance in the (cloud) force. Amazon has updated its Cloud Drive platform, adding a file syncing feature, putting it in direct competition with Dropbox, Microsoft SkyDrive and Google Drive. Starting today Amazon users can sign up for the service, which offers 5GB of storage for free.

Similar to the other cloud storage apps, Amazon Cloud Drive will now create a folder on your PC and instantly sync all your files. If you have the desktop app installed on multiple devices, the files will sync across all of them. Kindle Fire users get the added benefit of having their documents and photos automatically synced to their tablets. Cloud Drive will also sync music purchased from Amazon without counting it against your storage total.

Amazon's 5GB of free storage compares favorably to Dropbox's 2GB and is the same amount as Google Drive, but falls short of the 7GB SkyDrive provides. If 5GB won't meet your needs, Amazon has yearly storage plans ranging from $10 for 20GB of storage to $100 for 200GB. There's also Cloud Player Premium, which lets users store up to 250,000 songs for $24.99 a year.