SugarSync

SugarSync isn’t such a sweet alternative to Dropbox

SugarSync

Dropbox is one the most useful tools that I use. Being able to easily access files from any computer is a must for anyone who works remotely, but it’s good to have alternatives to Dropbox sometimes. One of those alternatives is SugarSync. At first glance, it looks like it can do a better job than Dropbox. However, there are a few issues that may have you think twice.

The bad news

After installing the SugarSync Manager, I chose which folders I wanted to sync. They also let me choose subfolders to sync or exclude. Within minutes I had an online backup service, and those files were accessible by any computer I synced my SugarSync account with.

For those of you who prefer the idea of a special folder for sharing files, SugarSync installs the Magic Briefcase on your computer to make that happen. Use this to quickly store files accessible by all your computers or colleagues, or at least that’s the theory.

It doesn’t work so well on Android. First, adding a file isn’t easy. I have to find the file by navigating the SugarSync app through the phone’s directory structure. Although, I almost am willing to call that a cool feature. Using SugarSync, I can find any mobile file, but sharing files should be easier than that. For example, I use the vRecorder app to record audio on my phone. From within that app I can easily send audio files to my Dropbox or Google Drive accounts, but there’s no SugarSync option.

Second, I can’t get anything in my Magic Briefcase to travel between my phone and computer. I was able to move an audio file into the Magic Briefcase on my phone, but I can’t access it on my computer, and vice versa. A text file I loaded from my laptop to the Magic Briefcase won’t appear on my phone.

Not all bad news, though

Despite some annoyances with Magic Briefcase, I am able to access its files via the website, and the Android app is able to access the laptop folders that are synced with SugarSync. This is a handy way to access all kinds of files, and I can even sync Dropbox files that are stored on my laptop — what Dropbox saves on my computer is saved on SugarSync. It’s not real-time, but it’s a legitimate backup.

Other features include:

  • Mobile apps for iOS, Android, Blackberry, Windows Mobile, and Symbian.
  • 5GB free with 30GB, 60GB, 100GB and 250GB upgrades available.
  • WebSync app, which lets you edit files in the cloud.
  • Automatic photo uploads, which (for what it’s worth), Dropbox can also do using the regular camera app.

Conclusion

Not being able to quickly and easily sync a file generated by my phone is a major shortcoming of SugarSync. Even if it’s due to user error, I’m not happy with the Magic Briefcase. Dropbox makes it very easy to do and sets the bar extremely high in this case.

However, depending on any one service is a bit risky, especially if it’s free. It’s good to have other options readily available when a web service goes down, and SugarSync can fill that void — just don’t expect it to be anything fantastic compared to your go-to cloud service.

  • Drew Garcia

    Carl,

    Thanks for taking the time to kick the tires! We’re always happy to get feedback – it’s how we improve our service. I wanted to respond specifically to the issues you ran into:

    SugarSync doesn’t currently show as a “share” destination in Android, but it is something we’ll be adding in an upcoming release. We agree with you 100% – it’s much easier to get the file into SugarSync directly from the originating app rather than browsing the Android file system.

    We’re not exactly sure why the Magic Briefcase isn’t working for you on your phone – we’d love to have a little more detail to help us troubleshoot. It sounds like you were doing a file upload using the SugarSync app, which should work. Using the SugarSync app, you can open the Magic Briefcase folder, then upload a file and it should sync to your other computers. If you are in a different folder in SugarSync (e.g., My Documents) and then initiate a file upload, the file will go that particular folder (e.g., My Documents). If you start the flow by browsing the local Android file system, then select a file for upload, it will go to the Magic Briefcase folder by default.

    We have plans for a redesign of our Android app to make the experience easier. But we’d love to hear any additional details to make sure we’re addressing your use cases.

    Thanks,

    Drew Garcia

    (product management at SugarSync)

  • brandon

    I realized these guys were charging my account a monthly fee. When I went to them to ask for a refund that a service I did not use 1 time this is how i was handled. DON’T DO BUSINESS WITH THESE PIECES OF SHIT

    End chat session

    Michael has joined the room

    Michael

    Hi there. Thanks for contacting SugarSync Chat, how can I help today?

    Brandon%20 _

    some reason i was getting charged for your service that i have not used

    Brandon%20 _

    I would like the 20$ i was charged back and this account cancled

    Michael

    I am sorry, I am unable to refund the previous charges.

    Brandon%20 _

    I did not use the service and i didnt sign up for a monthly service

    Michael

    Thank you for your feedback. To cancel your account, please follow this link, enter your password and click on the red button.: https://www.sugarsync.com/account/cancel

    Michael

    When you signed up you put in your credit card information. You agreed to the terms of service that state you have a 30 day free trial. After that you will be billed on a monthly basis.

    Michael

    I am sorry.

    Michael

    Is there anything else I can help you with?

    Brandon%20 _

    i want to talk to a mananger

    Brandon%20 _

    I did not use the service 1 time

    Michael

    I am sorry there is not one available and as I mentioned when you signed up

    Michael

    you agreed to the terms of service.

    Michael

    Please follow the link to cancel so you will not be charged again.

    Brandon%20 _

    I did not use the service i want to speak to a mananger

    Michael

    Thank you.

    Brandon%20 _

    I will be posting this chat online to show your level of customer service

    Michael

    It is the company policy, I am sorry a manger will not refund the charges.

    Michael

    I am sorry.

    Michael

    Is there anything else I can help you with?

    Brandon%20 _

    no your not really sorry you wont even send me to a mananger

    Brandon%20 _

    i want to speak to a mananger

    Brandon%20 _

    mananger

    Michael

    I am sorry a manager is not currently available as mentioned.

    Brandon%20 _

    when can i speak to one

    Brandon%20 _

    I can wait

    Michael

    I will pass this on to the manger

    Michael

    and he will get back to you at some point via email.

    Brandon%20 _

    why cant i speak with one

    Michael

    I am sorry.

    Brandon%20 _

    what is his name and email ?

    Michael

    Rob.

    Michael

    Is there anything else I can help you with?

    Brandon%20 _

    no id like his email

    Brandon%20 _

    rob is a very vague answer that dosent help me

    Michael

    Thank you and have a great day.

    Brandon%20 _

    I would like an email to a mananger along with a name.

    Michael has left the room