online file sharing service definition

This definition is part of our Essential Guide: The ultimate guide to cloud-based file sharing
Contributor(s): Bridget Botelho

An online file sharing service provides a way to store and access information, such as documents, data, photos and video, in the cloud rather than storing the information locally on a device hard drive or removable media.  

The advantage of online file sharing services, such as Dropbox, is that companies using the service do not have to support and maintain the data themselves. The information stored in an online file sharing service can be accessed from any device that has an Internet connection, including smartphones and tablet PCs, and by anyone who is given data access rights.

This was first published in November 2011

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