- 4GB maximum file size
- Optimal security with AES 256-bit encryption
- Automated to scheduled backup toggling
- Customizable cloud storage packages
- Unlimited devices
- No file versioning
- English only
Based in Scottsdale, Arizona, Nextiva is one of the market leaders in business cloud services. The company’s cloud storage service Nextiva Drive was launched in 2014, and it has since become recognized as an optimum storage and sync solution for anytime, anywhere access to files. It allows small and large businesses alike to sync across various devices in real-time and to collaborate remotely, backing up files automatically. Part of the Unitedweb holding company and founded in 2006, Nextiva began as a VoIP provider. Its founder, Tomas Gorny, then expanded its product base to include paperless fax, cloud storage and other related add-ons. The Nextiva premier product suite started with Nextiva Office VoIP and Nextiva Hosted Call Centers, followed on with SIP Trunking, vFax, and finally included Nextiva Drive, rounding off an absolutely comprehensive package.
Although the Nextiva platform is a product in a class of its own, the company is most praised for its level of customer service, a forte its competitors can’t match. Nextiva goes to great lengths to keep its customers satisfied. So much so in fact that its slogan is “Amazing Service”, a motto that stands at the core of its business model. With clients the likes of Target, Nissan, Burger King, IBM and Papa John’s, Nextiva Drive seems to be pushing all the right buttons, so let’s take a look at what it has to offer.
New backup services are being dished out by the dozen, but few of them are specifically designed for business users. Nextiva Drive is just one such backup service, but what sets this one apart from the rest is the fact that it was initially only an add-on service which evolved into a comprehensive data protection and distribution package. It’s also remarkably easy to use, so beginner and advanced users alike should be able to carry out most tasks without relying on the tutorial.
Nextiva Drive offers automatic and scheduled backups, online and mobile access and management, a userfriendly interface, a speedy set-up, and a seamless recovery process. Files can be synced across an infinite number of devices, and shared with co-workers at leisure. The mobile app provides universal access and backup on iOS and Android devices. In terms of encryption, Nextiva provides 256-AES encryotion for uploaded files and complete redundancy with multiple storage facilities and an ultra secure data center. What sets this service apart from the rest is the fact that the maximum file size for uploads is no less than 4GB.
A “My Files” folder is created for you on the online account, and from there on you’re free to create, upload and share however many folders or files you want. You can also create user accounts or set up passwords for shared files on your portal.
Unfortunately, English (US) is the only language the Nextiva Drive software currently supports. You can select which page to have as your portal startpage and whether or not users can use the common root folder. You can also opt to have regular backup reports sent to the e-mail addresses of your choice. Another useful feature is that you can set up alerts to be sent when your storage space falls below a certain percentage, if the client hasn’t connected or used the portal to transfer files in a certain amount of time.
The portal of your account allows you to navigate through files and folders created either on the online portal, or on any of your PC’s or devices. Your “Common” section designates people who have access to your files. Nextiva Drive is ideal for organizing large amounts of files. You can toggle between List View and Thumbnail View mode on the portal, as well as in any of the mobile apps.
Backup Scheduling and Archiving
The Nextiva Drive portal is extremely userfriendly, as is the PC application. You can schedule your backups, select your maximum bandwidth, and set your automatic file delete delays using one of the four windows in the PC app. You can also choose which files to archive and which not.
Files can be shared from all devices, but only the online portal allows you to select a password. You can share files on with other users through Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace, Windows Messenger, Bit.ly, Twitter, and Google+.
There’s virtually no type of file that you can’t backup or render with Nextiva Drive; it uploads files as large as 4GB at a time, and it renders both backed-up and synced files on any device. Files open up instantly. Even videos, large PDF’s and spreadsheets are quick to load, and the images are crisp and clear, even on mobile devices.
No File Versioning
Unfortunately though, Nextiva Drive won’t give you access to any file versions other than your last save. This may be a major drawback for many users, as the thought of being able to restore previous versions of a file certainly gives peace of mind. Especially if you’re often working with multiple people on the same file, it’s good to know you can look back at a previous file version to retrieve any data that was accidentally overwritten.
You can also protect your shared files with a personal password. You can revert to previous versions of files using the Restore backup option on your PC backup manager. Files are not archived per se, but it is up to you for how long you’d like files to be kept on the PC, before they are automatically deleted forever. You can select to restore certain files, or an entire backup collection.
Devices and Operating Systems
Nextiva Drive will run on Windows, Mac OS X, as well as devices with Windows Phone, Android and iOS operating systems. The desktop version works from virtually any device connected to the Internet, and it should allow you to sweep through the menu without any load-up delays. You can have as many users as you like, and you can manage your data using an unlimited number of devices and PCs.
The mobile app is a crowdpleaser. It’s remarkably easy to navigate through the menu, and you can hide the toolbar completely for full-screen viewing. As you use your mobile device to access the files remotely, you may notice a slight lag in video file rendering. Any media you open on your mobile device will however get pulled up quickly and is displayed perfectly.
Ease of Use
Setting up your account online involves choosing a payment plan and asking Nextiva Drive to activate your account over the telephone. Basic set up information is required, including the name and address of the company and the name of the person in charge of managing the Nextiva account. As soon as your account is activated, you can log into the online Nextiva portal and begin downloading the desktop applications and apps.
There are two desktop applications you’ll need: Nextiva Drive and Nextiva Sync. Needless to say, the Drive application will allow you to back up your files from a PC and access and manage this data via the online account. The Nextiva Sync desktop application lets you sync your data across an infinite number of devices. The handy tablet and phone apps can also be used to view pictures, music and videos, but editing documents is not an option. The PC and online versions, however, are fully functional.
All applications take mere seconds to download. The Windows app takes only 3.17MB of space on a hard drive, and the 3.2.2 version will take up about 4.8MB on your iPad. Helpful tutorials are available during set-up. Nextiva adds all the icons you need on your PC taskbar for easy access. That’s all you need to get started. As for the online portal, it will log you out for inactivity, but the server is very responsive and fast.
A “My Files” folder is created for you on the online account, and from then on, you’re free to create, upload and share however many folders or files you want. You can also create user accounts or set up passwords for shared files on your portal.
The Nextiva Drive PC application couldn’t be any more straightforward. You can use it to schedule backups, select bandwidth usage, restore previous backups, and select the files you’d like to backup. The application uses your PC file explorer to organize and render files, but it will not allow you to manage your settings.
Plans and Pricing
There are three basic Nextiva Drive packages: Drive Pro, Drive Pro Plus and Drive Enterprise. The last option is a fully customizable bundle available to companies requesting a quote.
The Drive Pro and Drive Pro Plus packages are essentially the same, with one exception: the storage size. If you go with the cheaper Drive Pro option, your storage size is limited to 100GB, which is generous to say the least, but possibly insufficient for large companies. With the slightly more expensive Drive Pro Plus package, the storage size is unlimited.
The Drive Pro package is available for $14.95 with a monthly plan, or $9.95 per month with an annual plan. That’s a whopping 33% off for committing to an annual Drive Pro package.
Drive Pro Plus, on the other hand, starts at $14.95 when you choose an annual plan, and reaches $19.95 for the monthly plan option.
As compared to the service prices of its main competitors, Nextiva is by far one of the most economical options. Whereas unlimited storage size for an account held with Box will cost similarly, the latter cloud storage service will not offer automatic backup or US-based customer support. With Carbonite for example, which has its customer support operation based in the US and offers complimentary automatic backup, the monthly plan of a cloud storage package is over $20.
Nextiva Drive’s customer service can be reached at (866) 756-2656, while sales inquiries are directed to (866) 559-6240. Support hours are between 7am to 9pm on workdays and from 11am to 3pm on Saturdays, with a live chat service available from 6am to 6pm AZ Time on business days. E-mails can be sent out of hours using the same live chat window. There is also an extensive knowledgebase with FAQ’s, billing and apps sections that feature step-by-step instructions. Nextiva Drive is a business that boasts BBB’s A+ accreditation for its level of customer service, with 95% of support and sales calls answered first time around, a first call company-wide resolution and short hold times.
What was initially a simple add-on for Nextiva VoIP customers steadily became a storage solution in its own right, designed specifically for business clients. Some of the biggest global companies rely on Nextiva Drive, and the company is going from strength to strength with unrivalled customer service and a robust product. The backup service is affordable, customizable, it complements existing Nextiva products and is based on an award-winning piece of software. The only downsides are the fact that it doesn’t come with a file versioning feature, and the fact that English is the only supported language, but that’s something they can work on. After all, Nextiva has only just launched the product and the features we’re missing now should be added in the near future.