Yesterday, the cloud storage company Dropbox announced its 'Home for Life' initiative, making Dropbox a service that can 'take pain away from technology so you can do more with your life.' Part of that package is Carousel, a photo and video gallery that combines your Dropboxed images with those on your phone in one accessible, beautiful place. When you have downloaded the app, it backs up your mobile photos, and automatically backs up new ones, before sorting them—and those previously stored in Dropbox—into a chronological gallery. There's also the option to share hundreds of images quickly and simply via 'private conversations'.
The 'Home for Life' idea is about simplicity, and for Dropbox that means taking care of your photos in a fuss-free way as possible: 'And unlike other mobile galleries, the size of your Carousel isn’t constrained by the space on your phone, which means you can finally have your entire life’s memories in one place.' No, it's just constrained by the size of your Dropbox account. And with Dropbox being one of the more pricey cloud storage options out there, this could become expensive quite quickly. It's fuss-free, but at a price.
I love Dropbox. I use it every day. But not for photo storage. Its cost is prohibitive and despite the convenience and good looks of Carousel, it makes more sense for me to use Google+ to back-up my mobile images and Dropbox to store and share documents. When I'm able to auto-upload an unlimited number of standard-sized images (so that's 2048 pixels along the longest edge) from my phone to Google+, or full-sized ones at Google's much cheaper storage rates, it just doesn't make sense to use up my valuable Dropbox space.
If you're uncertain of entrusting your photos to Google, Flickr has an auto-upload feature in iOS 7 and it'll take you quite some time to burn through its terabyte of storage. Or there's Microsoft's OneDrive, which has an auto-back-up feature, too.
Dropbox has made a valiant attempt with Carousel to create a service that sets it apart from its competitors, with a swish interface and direct sharing options, but I'm not convinced that they offer me enough to justify the outlay. I won't be downloading right now. But I'm not you, and if you think it's what you're after, pay a visit to the Carousel website.