Backblaze provides cloud storage and file backups. They offer a range of services for personal users and businesses. For personal use, they offer a simple and cost-effective backup service that will keep your files and important data protected.
In this Backblaze review we break down what this company has to offer, and if its services are worth it for home users.
In this review…
Backblaze deals primarily with file backups and retrieval, but it also has a proprietary cloud storage system – B2. In this Backblaze review, we are concentrating on the backup service. Backblaze offers a simple set of tools and a no-fuss approach to file backups and security. Anyone should easily be able to set up their account, install the software, and make backups – even without decent tech knowledge.
We also feel that the pricing for a single subscription is relatively competitive. There is also a discount available for an annual subscription. The cost does ramp up if you have multiple devices, however, and this is something to consider. Also, if you are looking for an advanced backup service that gives you full control – Backblaze may not be the best choice for you.
Backblaze is meant to be easy to use and simply run in the background with minimal user interaction.
Backblaze: Features and Usability
As you will see below in this Backblaze review, this company does offer a range of services for business use. It also has a cloud storage service. However, we are concentrating on the Backblaze personal backup service. This is aimed at home users who want a quick and simple backup service to protect their personal data and files.
Before we look at the pricing and functionality of Backblaze, let’s take a quick look at what it actually offers. It has a relatively simple set of services which makes it much easier for those who don’t have great knowledge about backup providers. The current services include:
- B2 Cloud Storage.
- Business Backup.
- Personal Backup.
The B2 cloud storage is their storage platform and offers a range of simple cloud storage solutions. Their prices are based on GB storage per month and GB downloads per month. However, they offer a simple calculator so you can easily estimate the cost.
The business backup is a backup service aimed at small to medium-sized businesses with multiple devices. In essence, it uses the same price plan as the personal backup, but it offers more flexibility for backup options, including Veeam, NAS, and server backups.
In this guide, we are concentrating on their personal backup. This is their simple and easy backup service aimed at home computer users.
We like that Backblaze has a simple pricing structure – it’s not convoluted and it’s easy to understand. For personal use, there is essentially a single monthly price, and there is also a discounted rate for a one-year or two-year subscription paid up-front. The prices are listed below:
Personal Backup Subscription
- Monthly: £6.00.
- One Year Subscription: £60.00 (Save £12 overall).
- Two Year Subscription: £110.00 (Save £34 overall).
Whilst the monthly price is reasonable, if you plan on using this service long-term, there is no reason why you would not purchase either the one-year or two-year plan. When paying for one year upfront, you effectively get two months for free. Alternatively, if you opt for the two-year plan, you effectively get over 5 months free.
It is important to note that this £6.00 monthly fee is for one computer only. This means that if you have multiple computers in your home or business, you need to purchase a separate subscription for each one. This can quickly drive up the cost. Some other backup providers like SpiderOak do offer multi-device subscriptions, for example.
There is also no free version of Backblaze available. You can test the backup service as part of a 15-day free trial, however. Overall, Backblaze is affordable for a single home computer setup. We also like the annual discount offered.
So what does a basic subscription to Backblaze Personal Backup give you? To make it easier to understand, we have listed the basic features included in the subscription below:
- Unlimited storage for file size and storage capacity.
- Instant backup on software installation.
- Fast upload and backup speeds.
- Versatile access via a desktop, web interface, or mobile app.
- Two-factor authentication for all accounts.
- All files are encrypted via SSL before transferal.
- Private encryption key available for additional security.
- Schedule automatic backups.
- Restore previous backups from an indefinite timeframe.
We love that this service has unlimited storage. Other backup providers like SpiderOak, for example, charge an annual fee for a limited storage capacity. In this respect, Backblaze is quite generous. Therefore, if you have thousands of photos, videos, or music files, you can protect them all.
The security of this backup system is also an important benefit. As standard, you can protect your account using two-factor authentication. This is all but necessary in today’s digital world. Also, files are encrypted via SSL before uploading but also encrypted in the final storage location. We also like that you can use private key encryption too for an extra layer of security.
In terms of backup versatility, Backblaze does not offer as much control over the backup process. As a result, it may not be suitable for users who want to make specific backups and have control over the file upload process. It’s more of a “sit back and let it work” service.
Desktop Interface and Utility
The main interface is the desktop program. When you first install it, you are prompted to make a complete backup which is a nice touch. This gets you started quickly and also shows you how the backup process works.
When running, Backblaze is docked in your notification tray. This means it causes minimum disruption but you can still access it quickly. In terms of general ease of use, the desktop interface is simple and you should have no issues creating backups. However, it is important to note that it does not work with Windows File Explorer or the macOS Finder for file uploads.
In most instances, your interaction with the desktop control panel should be minimal. You should be able to leave most of the settings in their default automatic mode and the backup process will work fine. However, if you wish, you can tweak some settings like performance.
Web Interface and Mobile App
Aside from the desktop software, Backblaze also has a web interface and a mobile app. The web interface is relatively effective and it has a similar design to the desktop software. It has a clear menu where you can edit the settings and create manual backups. Also, the web interface is where you can restore files or restore a specific backup – you cannot do this via the desktop program.
You can also manage your Backblaze account and backups via an Android and iOS app. We like the convenience this provides and it means you can access your account from any location. Whilst useful, we feel the app is currently quite limited in its functionality and features. It definitely needs some improvement and fleshing-out.
Although their services are relatively self-explanatory, you may still need to speak to a customer support rep. Unfortunately, Backblaze does not have a dedicated customer support phone line.
Also, as far as we can see, they do not have any live customer service reps at all. They do have a support chat. However, we have tested this and it appears only to be an AI bot. Depending on what you type in, the bot will provide relevant answers. You can request contact, but this simply directs you to an email submission form.
We would like to see readily available live customer support. However, the AI bot is quite effective, and the response times to email queries were prompt. There is also a large knowledge base so you can find answers yourself.
Backblaze Review: Conclusion
So what have we discerned from this Backblaze review? Is it a worthwhile service? For home users, the simplicity of the backup process, and the ease of use of the desktop software and web interface are certainly a plus.
Also, in terms of pricing, again, for a single home computer, Backblaze is highly competitive. It may not be as competitive, however, when considering a multi-device or multi-computer network – the individual subscriptions can soon add up. If you want a simple and effective cloud backup service with great security, this is a good option, however for single users.
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