There’s no shortage of ways to share files with other people, whether you want to send them in a group chat, attach them to an email, or send them via AirDrop or Nearby Sharing. All of these work perfectly well, but they’re all better for smaller files.
If you have a larger file to send to someone — like a high-resolution video or an archive of many different files, for example — you may start to experience problems. Email clients may reject your file because it is too large, or you may wait a while for the file to be transferred over a protocol such as Bluetooth.
Additionally, if you’re looking to limit the amount of time a file is available for download, or if you want to limit who has access and what type of access they have, a feature-packed app is probably best.
However, you have two good options. All popular cloud storage services — such as Apple iCloud, Google Drive, or Microsoft OneDrive — come with flexible file sharing options built into them. However, if you don’t use one or prefer not to use your device to share data, you’ll also find a number of dedicated apps that only share files and nothing else.
Below, I take a look at the file sharing options offered by Apple, Google, and Microsoft, as well as some third-party apps. There’s a lot of the latter out there; I have just listed one of the most popular ones that I have used many times.
Maximum file sharing size: 50GB
Apple’s iCloud Drive lets you upload files to your cloud storage via iCloud Drive on the web By clicking on the download button at the top (the arrow pointing towards the cloud). You can also upload files using your iCloud Drive folder on macOS, iCloud for WindowsOr the Files app for iOS.
To share a file from the web interface, click the three dots next to the file name, then choose Collaborate with others To show a new dialog box.
- Click Share options To choose who can access the file: people you specifically invited or anyone who comes across the link. You can also choose whether people you share the file with can make edits to it.
- Select the box labeled Anyone can add more people If you want to allow the file to be reshared by the people you share it with.
- He chooses Copy linkIf you’re sharing the link with specific people, you’ll need to enter their email addresses. Click InvolvedAnd iCloud Drive It creates a link to the file that you can then share via email, instant message, or however you like.
You can’t set expiration dates on links you’ve shared, but you can revoke access to specific people or disable links at any time: simply click the three dots next to the file and Collaborate with others. If you’re using your iPhone, you can find the same sharing options by long-pressing a file in the Files app and then selecting Involved And He cooperates From the drop-down menu.
Maximum file share size: 5TB (Depending on the file type)
You have a variety of options for sharing files if you are a Google Drive user. from Web interfaceYou can click New > Download file To upload files up to 5 TB in size. Alternatively, you can use Google Drive desktop client To sync files from your Windows or macOS computer or the Google Drive app Android or internal control Department To download files from your phone.
- When a file is uploaded and ready to share, click the three dots next to it on the web interface and then Share > Share. The following dialog box provides several options for sharing the file.
- To create a link that anyone can use, click restricted And change it to Anyone have the link. You can share this link on social media, in messages or anywhere you want.
- Once the link is created, click view On the right to change the access level: view (reads only), hangingor editor. These last two options only make a difference in files that can be edited (such as Google Docs), not in documents that need external applications.
- Alternatively, click inside Add people and groups To enter specific contacts with whom you want to share the file via their email addresses. This requires your contacts to sign in to see the file and helps you manage access more intentionally than you can with a link. The drop-down menu on the right allows you to choose between view, hangingAnd editor Access levels, and you have the option to notify your contacts that a file has been shared and leave a message if necessary.
Google Drive doesn’t give you the option to set expiration dates for shared files, but to revoke access to them, you can revert to the same date Involved Dialogue. The same options are available in the mobile app if you tap the three dots next to the file and then… Involved or Access management.
Maximum file sharing size: 250GB
If Microsoft is your preferred cloud storage provider (which it may be if you spend most of your time on Windows), you can share files via Web interfacevia the OneDrive folder in Windows, via OneDrive for MacOSOr via OneDrive for Android or internal control Department.
On the web, click the three dots next to the file, then Involved To share with other people. The following dialog box gives you two options:
- To share the file with specific people, enter their names in the file to box, and add a message to attach to the invitation to participate if you want. Click Sends To share the file.
- Alternatively, click Copy To create a link to your file that can be shared anywhere, from forums to social networks.
- They both have options Anyone with the link can edit Lay next to them. Click this to configure editing privileges, the expiration date for the share link, and, if necessary, a password to access the file.
To change any of these settings after you’ve shared the file or to revoke access to it completely, click the three dots next to the file, then Access management.
Maximum file sharing size: 2GB (free); 200GB ($12 per month); No limit ($23/month)
You don’t necessarily have to use a full cloud storage service to share large files. WeTransfer, which is available Onlineon Androidand on internal control Department, lets you share files up to 2GB in size for free. Pay $12 per month for a Pro account, and that caps out at 200GB; Pay $23 per month for a Premium account, and there are no file size limits.
- If the file you want to send is less than 2GB, you don’t even need to sign up for an account. Simply accept the terms and conditions of WeTransfer websiteAnd you are ready to start downloading.
- He chooses File Upload To choose the file or files you want to send from your computer.
- Click on the three dots to choose between them Send email transfer or Get the transfer link. The former handles everything via email addresses, and you’ll get a confirmation when you download a file; The latter gives you a link that you can share with anyone, without confirmations.
- When everything is ready, click transformation or Get a link To share the file.
You’ll receive an on-screen confirmation message and a link to copy, if you choose this option. If you sign up for a WeTransfer account, free or otherwise, you can track the number of times your file has been downloaded by logging into your account and choosing Transfers From the top.
For both methods, there are a variety of other options: some are available for free accounts and some are not. For example, you can set custom wallpapers for the download page (although there are ads on the free account). You can also set a custom expiration time (up to seven days on the free account or unlimited on paid accounts) and set a password for file sharing (if you’re a paying user). There’s also the option to add a message when you share the file, regardless of whether you pay or not.
Maximum file sharing size: 2GB (free); 250GB ($4.80 per month)
Smash is similar to WeTransfer in that it focuses on sharing large files quickly without any other cloud storage features attached. You can load up Smash Online And send files up to 2GB in size without paying or even registering. Sign up for one of the subscription plans, which start at $10 per month or $72 per year, and go up to 250GB.
Signing up for the subscription plan also gives you extras like custom branding for your download page and sharing links that last longer – 30 days instead of 14. If you’re happy with sharing files for free, just head over to To the site And click on the Smash logo in the middle.
- Choose the file you want to share from your computer, and choose one of two ways to share it: e-mail or connection.
- Go to e-mail option, and you need to enter your email address, the email addresses of the people you want to share the file with, then the subject header and message to include in the email.
- He chooses connection Alternatively, there are two optional text fields that you can fill in if you like: a title and a custom URL for the download page. Your email address is required for download confirmations, and finally, there’s a checkbox that means anyone who wants to download your file will also need to provide an email address.
- Whether for e-mail or connection option, you can click the gear icon at the bottom to set a password for sharing the file and customize the length of time the file can be shared (up to 14 days for free accounts).
- When you’re ready, click either Sends (for email) or Get a link (For links).
You’ll then receive an email confirming the transfer and will see a link on your screen if you choose to share your file this way. If you’re a free user, you’ll get updates about when your file will download via email — if you end up paying for Smash, you can get the details by logging into your account as well.
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