Microsoft is clearly attempting to boost the appeal and usage of its Cloud-hosted software suite Office 365 and online storage service OneDrive. The company already offers seemingly ample 1TB of cloud storage space for its Office 365 subscribers. However, starting this week, subscribers will get the option to subscribe to even more storage space. Additionally, Microsoft is adding a new security feature to OneDrive for securely storing files on the cloud.
Microsoft is introducing quite a few new storage plans for its cloud-based online storage facility. The company is also adding an interesting security solution to the consumer version of its OneDrive cloud storage service. Microsoft has announced new paid OneDrive Personal plans for OneDrive consumer customers and Office 365 consumer subscribers. Moreover, the OneDrive consumer accounts will get OneDrive Personal Vault feature, complimentary secure storage space in the cloud for sensitive files.
Microsoft New Paid OneDrive Personal Plans:
Every personal subscriber to the Microsoft Office 365 subscription is currently entitled to a hefty 1TB of OneDrive storage. However, Microsoft indicated that several users of the cloud-hosted productivity suite have been asking the company to offer a way to buy even more storage. This week, Microsoft confirmed the news about premium add-on storage for OneDrive and Office 365 subscribers. Microsoft announced OneDrive additional storage plans. These paid plans allow subscribers of Office 365 suite to add more storage to their existing Office 365 subscription on OneDrive.
Interested subscribers can purchase additional storage in 200 GB increments. Each additional 200 GB increment will cost the subscriber $1.99 per month. The lowest slab of additional paid cloud storage on OneDrive for Office 365 costs $1.99 per month, while the largest slab comes with a 1 TB of paid storage which costs $9.99 per month. Essentially, the new total maximum storage that Microsoft is making available is 2TB for Office 365 subscribers.
— Raul Pesch (@raulpesch) June 20, 2019
Seth Patton, General Manager of Microsoft 365 has confirmed that Microsoft has no plans to offer even more storage in the near future. Incidentally, those who have multiple users with 1TB each under their Office 365 Home plan, only the primary account holder is eligible for the extra storage purchase. Speaking about the new changes, Patton mentioned, “We’ve been evaluating this for quite a while. When we did the original 1TB, there was a lot of analysis about what was right for customers and our partners. It took a long time to analyze sustainable service goals. Microsoft doesn’t want Office 365 users to see OneDrive as simply a place for backup; the company wants to position OneDrive as part of the integrated Office 365 service.”
Subscribers have the option and freedom to increase, decrease, or cancel their additional storage plan anytime. Incidentally, these plans are not available immediately. Microsoft is expected to make these plans available to the personal accounts of Office 365 in the coming months.
In addition to the new slabs of paid storage, Microsoft is also increasing the storage baseline for OneDrive Personal users who currently pay $1.99 a month for 50 GB of storage. Such users will now get double the cloud storage for the same fee. In other words, these users will get 100 GB of cloud storage for the same $1.99 a month fee. Users of OneDrive need not take any action to avail the additional storage. They will be automatically upgraded in the next few months. Subscribers currently using the 50 GB plan should start seeing 50 GB more storage added to their account for free in the near future.
Microsoft OneDrive Personal Vault Feature:
Microsoft also is adding a new security feature to OneDrive. The OneDrive Personal Vault is a protected area inside OneDrive. Users will need to undergo an additional layer of security to access this secure area. Currently permitted methods that grant access to OneDrive Personal Vault include fingerprint, face, PIN, Microsoft Authenticator app or code sent via email or SMS. Users can also set an inactivity timer for the duration for which the vault will remain accessible. After the timer runs out, users have to repeat the authentication process to regain access.
.@OneDrive Personal Vault will bring added security to your most important files. We’re also increasing the OneDrive standalone storage plan from 50 GB to 100 GB at no additional charge. Learn more: https://t.co/9deJit6jr7
— Microsoft 365 news (@MSFT365news) June 25, 2019
One of the many advantages of the OneDrive Personal Vault will be the ability to scan documents, take pictures or shoot video directly into the secure area. In other words, using the OneDrive mobile app, users can completely bypass the camera app and gallery of the smartphone. Microsoft recommends the vault could be a good place to store driver’s license, insurance documents or passport. However, users can store anything they want. The OneDrive Personal Vault’s storage capacity is only limited by the subscribed amount of OneDrive storage space.