Clover is a POS system that launched in April 2012. The company behind the product was incorporated in 2010 and was acquired after two years of existence by First Data Corporation, a well-known payments processing company. Early backers included venture capital firms like Andreessen Horowitz and Sutter Hill Ventures..
Under First Data’s ownership, Clover launched its first hardware solution, Clover Station, a point of sale terminal that allowed retailers to receive payments with ease. In 2016, First Data unveiled a second product called Clover Go, a card reader that works with smartphones. Clover’s point-of-sale products have earned a significant market share in the U.S. and abroad; the company processed over $200 billion in transactions in 2022.
In 2019, Clover’s owner, First Data, was acquired by Fiserv, another payment processing giant. Clover has remained under Fiserv since then but operates as an independent subsidiary.
Clover POS: Plans and pricing
Clover offers four types of point-of-sale hardware; Go, Station, Flex, and Mini. You can either pay outright for a device or rent it on a monthly basis. Renting Clover Station costs $120 per month for the one-screen version and $130 monthly for the two-screen version. Flex costs $35 monthly, while Mini costs $45 monthly. The Clover Go card reader costs $49 one-time (there’s no monthly pricing option for it).
The pay monthly option allows you to get the POS system for your business with no money down, and you can cancel your subscription and return the device at any time. But, if you wish, you can also pay in full ($1,349 for the one-screen Clover Station; $1,649 for the dual-screen Station; $799 for the Mini; and $449 for Flex). The upfront costs are relatively expensive compared to the competition, which is why renting can be a better option for small businesses.
If you use Clover to process payments, then you'll pay a separate 2.3% + $0.10 or $2.6% + $0.10 for all successful card transactions depending on your monthly plan.
Clover POS: Features
Clover offers five hardware options:
Station Solo: An all-in-one POS terminal with a single 14-inch touchscreen, cash drawer, and printer. It lets you accept payments from all major credit cards.
Station Duo: The same Station POS systems but with two screens (one for the seller and the other for the customer).
Go: A compact card reader that works together with the Clover mobile app. It uses Wi-Fi or a cellular connection.
Flex: A handheld POS system with a 6-inch touchscreen, built-in printer, camera, and barcode scanner.
Mini: A full point-of-sale system yet in a compact package. It features an 8-inch touchscreen, a card slot, a contactless card reader, and a built-in receipt printer.
The most important part of using Clover is the software system that works with the hardware. This system makes it easy to collect payments and run your business regardless of what type, e.g., restaurant, hotel, brick-and-mortar retailer, etc. It manages every aspect of processing payments, including organizing inventory and collecting money from customer cards.
This POS system is cloud-based, so you can track your sales, deposits, refunds, and sales reports from anywhere as long as you have the correct login details. It features integrated sales reporting, so you can use real-time or past data to track your business performance and visualize it with customizable reports.
Depending on the hardware you select, your POS system can be handheld, portable, or countertop-based. Besides, you can purchase Clover-approved third-party accessories for your POS hardware, e.g., a weight scale, barcode scanner, and cash drawer. There are also many third-party apps developed for Clover’s point-of-sale hardware, e.g., a customer discount app and accounting software.
You can use Clover’s payment processing system for your hardware or choose a third-party processor (Clover does not restrict its devices to its own payment system, unlike many other rivals).
If you choose Clover's payment processing platform lets you accept payments from credit cards, debit cards, or gift cards. Customers can insert their card chip, swipe the card, or tap it to pay for your products or services. You can also scan and submit paper checks or add a cash drawer to collect and record payments as easily as you would digitally.
Clover POS: Interface and in use
One of the major complaints we observed when researching for this review is that Clover can be difficult to set up initially and the user interface can be confusing at times. You may face some difficulty trying to configure and use the POS system, but with time, you should get used to it.
Clover POS: Support
Clover offers customer support through email and telephone. There's a single support email, while telephone support lines vary depending on your country. There’s no live chat option, which we consider a disadvantage, but many customers speak highly of the company’s customer service offered via email and telephone.
Clover POS: The competition
The Stripe Terminal and GoDaddy Terminal are two major competitors to Clover’s point-of-sale systems. Stripe offers its hardware upfront at a significantly cheaper price than Clover’s, but it has higher payment processing fees.
GoDaddy offers cheaper hardware systems and lower transaction fees. But, customers can only use GoDaddy’s payments processing software, unlike Clover which allows you to use other payment processors.
Clover is a reliable point-of-sale system to run your business with. It lets you accept payments with ease, and you’re free to choose whichever payment processor you want despite using Clover’s hardware. However, Clover’s hardware is expensive to purchase upfront and the user interface can be confusing to new users.
If you still love print magazines, then Readly makes it supremely easy to get all your favorites in one digital place for an affordable price. The advantage of this platform is you don't need to subscribe to each magazine separately – you just pay the one fee and get access to every single title available on Readly from around the world... which now numbers around the 6,000 mark!
Yes, there are magazines in several languages available on Readly and they’re all mixed in, although you can filter by language if you wish. If you don’t filter, there seems to be no apparent order in which the magazines are presented to you the first time you sign up, or when you’re browsing to discover new content.
Finding new magazines to read is remarkably simple. While Readly will throw up suggestions on what you’ve previously read, the search feature is very quick and filters only the specific category you’ve searched for, no mix-ups there. No matter what platform you’re using Readly on – PC, tablet or phone – the user interface is simple and smooth, with no apparent latency when turning pages.
Readly seems to have been specifically designed for use on handheld devices like a tablet or smartphone. You can select individual articles within a magazine, which also increases the font size, and also allows you to scroll to read through completely. This feature, however, is missing on the browser application and makes it a little harder to read on a larger screen like a laptop or desktop PC.
All in all, the ability to read as many magazines as you can digest for a small monthly fee makes Readly one of the best platforms for consuming print content in the digital age.
Readly free trial and price
In comparison to subscribing to individual print editions of magazines, Readly works out to be far more affordable. As of January 2023, a subscription will cost you $11.99 / £9.99 / AU$11.99. That's a major change to the previous prices of $9.99 / £7.99 / AU$14.99 a month, with the US and UK subscribers now paying more than their Australian counterparts.
However, it's still a lot cheaper than signing up for several individual magazines that you might want to read. That monthly cost gets you access to around 6,000 magazines in different languages, plus a handful of newspapers from a few countries.
Importantly, Readly offers a free trial period, which is usually 30 days. Occasionally, however, we’ve found the trial period to be two or three months, which makes it an even better value option. There are no contracts to lock you in, so you can cancel your membership any time.
Over 5,000 magazines
Kids and adult content
Readly claims there are over 5,000 magazines in its catalogue and we didn’t stop to count. That number in itself is staggering, and offers options for every kind of reader – anglers to audiophiles, kids to pensioners, high-flyers to home-makers.
At the time of writing, we couldn’t find any gaps in topic or category. There are trashy supermarket tabloids alongside the likes of National Geographic, and you can find reads on special topics like bird watching and trains. You’ll even find bookazines that teach you about a specific topic, like coding or photography, and there are plenty of puzzle issues as well.
During our testing, we didn't find any delays in new issues of subscribed magazines arriving on Readly, at least for the titles we picked.
Comics have their own category on Readly, with titles like The Walking Dead and Commando included.
There are several kids and young adult magazines also available, like The Beano, National Geographic Kids and so on. However, there are no parental controls, so the kids' titles are sharing shelf space with trashy tabloids of the "A POLTERGEIST had SEX with our DOG" variety when you’re doing a general browsing of all the magazines available on Readly.
Available on Android, iOS, Kindle Fire, web browser
Simple, easy-to-use interface
Readly apps are available for the usual suspects of iOS and Android – for smartphones and tablets – as well as an app for the Kindle Fire tablets. You can even read on a web browser via go.readly.com. All apps are free to download.
The mobile and tablet apps, irrespective of platform, are very similar, displaying thumbnails (or tiles) of each magazine’s cover art. You can browse the Discover section to start getting some ideas of what you could read, and any title you’ve tapped on begins to download automatically for offline reading. The progress of this download is visible via a thin yellow line at the bottom of the screen on tablet and mobile (note that there is no download option when reading on a browser). If you happen to be just flicking through an issue, the download stops, and then picks up where it left off when you open the same issue again at another time. Once downloaded, you’ll see a green down arrow below the specific issue’s thumbnail.
Download speed varies, depending on the size of each individual issue, but is very quick for newspapers. Storage demands aren’t excessive – after downloading four magazine issues and two newspapers, Readly took up 516MB of space on our iPhone. If you don’t think you’ll be reading offline, there is a toggle switch in the app’s settings to disable mobile data for when you’re out and about or abroad. You can, of course, remove anything you've downloaded to free up space.
In fact, Readly gives you a lot of control over how you want the app to function – you can set the maximum number of issues you can download, enabled or disable background refreshes of pages, have page-turn animations switched on and even have a sound accompany that animation, both of which are wonderful just from a nostalgic point of view when reading a digital edition.
Titles and issues you’ve read – even if they haven’t finished downloading – get added to the Recently Read section under My Content. You can Favorite any title you want for easy access later and you can even bookmark specific pages within a magazine if you need to revisit it later. Your favorites, recently read magazines and bookmarks are all listed in the My Content tab across all platforms.
If you’re reading across several devices, your content gets synced almost immediately, including which page you stopped on. If you notice the sync hasn't happened, a quick refresh of the app will do the trick. We tested Readly in a desktop browser, an iPhone, an iPad and an Android tablet and every device synced smoothly.
Designed for handheld devices
Not perfect on desktop
Browsing and reading on Readly is fast and fluid: it's just like swooping around a photo library, and a thumbnail viewer with a scroll bar pops up for easy navigation. If your device is in portrait mode you'll see single pages full screen, and in landscape you're given the choice of single page view and double page view. On a browser, though, you only get the double-page view, with a single zoom option via double-clicking on a page.
Two-page views on any device have very small font sizes making them exceptionally difficult to read (practically illegible on a phone). We tried reading on both a 16-inch laptop as well as a 24-inch monitor and they both were hard to read. Zooming in isn’t a great experience on desktop either as that requires a lot of scrolling up and down, as well as left and right to get the full page experience.
One-page views on mobile and tablet, though, require no such zooming. You can pinch to zoom if you wish, but there is a yellow 'page' icon below each magazine page that opens up a full article in a single file. This removes some formatting aspects of the article (although images remain untouched), as well as any background colors, but it offers a smooth scrolling and reading experience for individual articles.
Interestingly, the Readly app is intuitive enough to recognize an advertisement from the real articles, and the page icon disappears for ad placements and covers. This feature lets you read either on a white background or switch to dark mode for a black background and white text. If there are multiple articles on a single page, a pop-up is presented asking you which one you want to read.
Unfortunately, this article view feature isn’t available when reading on a browser and is our only complaint about the Readly experience.
If you love your magazines, we can’t recommend Readly highly enough, particularly since it offers such great value. Not only are you getting access to thousands of magazines you likely wouldn’t be able to get in your country, it also doesn’t cost much at all. You only need a couple of magazines to justify the monthly Readly subscription.
A simplified user experience, the ability to read offline and switch across different devices without losing your spot makes Readly a great experience… as long as you steer clear of the platform’s browser interface, which is missing some of the mobile and tablet app features.
Formerly known as Xenmobile, Citrix Endpoint Manager is a unified device management system that provides a simplified platform for IT departments to monitor and administer hardware of all types.
With features beyond the scope of standard Mobile Device Management (MDM) products, Citrix Endpoint Manager supports all commercially available mobile operating systems and desktop OSs. Offered stand-alone or as part of a more comprehensive selection of Citrix business software, Citrix Endpoint Manager aims to be seamless for the end user and effortless for the IT department to manage.
Citrix Endpoint Manager is an upgraded version of Xenmobile, offering additional features.
In addition to the usual MDM functionalities like compliance management and application control, Citrix Endpoint Manager provides all the necessary tools for end-users to carry out their tasks. It offers a comprehensive BYOD management system with hassle-free enrollment and supports handheld scanners and similar endpoints.
The system enables easy tracking and identification of both devices and users, allowing for managing content viewed on devices (whether online or on corporate servers), deployment of software and apps, and assignment and withdrawal of permissions. The comprehensive inventory can be managed and grouped by device and other parameters, and policies can be applied and adjusted across hardware and users, all from the admin screen of Citrix Endpoint Manager.
Installation and setup
The Citrix Endpoint Manager is a powerful tool that operates seamlessly within a standard Citrix Workspace environment. It offers a comprehensive suite of tools and features for managing devices and applications within an organization.
With the ability to integrate with existing workspaces, the Endpoint Manager makes it easy to enroll devices and manage app distribution or restrictions across the network. To enroll devices, a console with all the necessary tools is provided, and end users can use the AutoDiscovery feature for enrollment, making the process simpler and reducing the workload on the MDM administrator.
An Apple Push Notifications developer account is required for Apple hardware, while Android devices require an organizational Google account and a Google Play account.
With the Citrix Endpoint Manager, organizations can streamline device management processes and improve productivity and security.
Citrix Endpoint Manager offers integrated administration of Android and Android Enterprise, Chrome OS, macOS, iOS, tvOS, iPadOS, and Windows 10 devices. Only macOS and tvOS cannot be found on mobile hardware. Linux is only supported by a Citrix Ready workspace hub compatible with the Raspberry Pi 3.
Citrix Endpoint Manager can access and control these devices' management systems. So, for example, the Unified Endpoint Management capability in Windows 10 can be used to enroll and manage Windows 10 tablets and hybrids. Similarly, Citrix Endpoint Manager can access mobile device data, app information, and control security and other aspects in iOS for iPhone and iPadOS for the Apple iPad.
Additionally, Citrix Endpoint Manager supports Alexa for Business, making it the ideal choice for managing and administering mobile IoT devices and integrating those with the usual MDM hardware. Need to start a projector or dim the lights in the conference room? Those integrations can be handled from a permitted mobile device across the Citrix Endpoint Manager environment.
Citrix Endpoint Manager prioritizes both hardware and user compatibility. Rather than restricting users to specific devices, it takes a flexible approach, allowing organizations to determine the best machines, apps, and software vendors for their IT, colleagues, and overall business needs.
Citrix Workspace is a unified platform that can be accessed across devices and profiles, ensuring that users have the necessary tools on the hardware they use. Enrollment is simple and usually doesn't require repetition.
From an administrative perspective, each user and device can be easily managed through a user-friendly interface that provides analysis data. This interface allows you to monitor compliance information device statistics by platform and carrier and manage device security, apps, and permissions.
Plans and pricing
Are you looking for pricing options for Citrix? They offer different packages that can be scaled according to the needs of your business.
The Stand-alone package integrates with other Citrix products and supports major platforms and hardware. This package costs $4 per user or $3 per monthly device.
Workspace Premium is a more comprehensive solution that costs $18 per user per month. This package offers a secure interface to access apps and files, including Citrix Endpoint Manager and other notable Citrix products.
Workspace Premium Plus costs $25 per user per month and includes hybrid deployment options for Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops, with cloud management.
To know how much Citrix Endpoint Manager may cost, visit their website, which provides a helpful calculator. Simply choose a plan, usage type, and quantity to get an estimation (actual prices may vary).
For instance, if you have 500 users and choose the Stand-alone package on a one-year contract, it would cost $4.83 per user per month. If you choose a three-year contract, you could save 20% and pay only $3.87 per user monthly.
When selecting a mobile device management (MDM) solution, many factors must be considered. One important consideration is the offerings provided by established players in organizational collaboration networks. Citrix Endpoint Manager is a strong contender in this space due to its wide assortment of features and tools and its straightforward device enrollment process.
If your network is already utilizing Citrix Workspace or requires an upgrade, then choosing Citrix Endpoint Manager would be a sensible decision. The necessary operating systems and server software have already been installed, and the server hardware is operational. If your budget permits, transitioning to Citrix Endpoint Manager within an existing Citrix environment may be your most appropriate option.
With its powerful management capabilities and user-friendly interface, Citrix Endpoint Manager can help streamline your organization's mobile device management processes, allowing you to focus on what matters - your business.
Whether managing a small team of mobile workers or a large enterprise with thousands of devices, Citrix Endpoint Manager has the tools and features you need to succeed. So why not try it today and see how it can help take your mobile device management to the next level?
Not too long ago, being able to remotely upload content and store and retrieve the data as and when you needed it seemed like a futuristic dream. But today, the best cloud storage services offer you that and so much more. If you’ve been thinking about storing your data in the cloud, Internxt - a cloud storage service with a focus on privacy and security - is a viable option.
We’ve explored the service’s pricing, features, interface, security, and support so that you can decide if it’s the right cloud storage service for your needs.
Internxt: Plans & pricing
Internxt’s basic free plan offers 10GB of storage - and one of our picks for best free cloud storage providers. However there is a large emphasis on “up to”, here. All accounts start with a 2GB allowance, while more storage can be added for free by completing certain tasks. These include installing the Internxt mobile or desktop app (1GB each), sharing a file via a link (1GB) and inviting up to 5 friends (1GB each).
Beyond that, seven other pricing plans are available for individuals and for businesses.
One popular approach to tiered subscriptions among cloud drive services is to offer varying degrees of functionality for both personal and business users. Internxt has decided to offer single personal and business plans with access to the same features, instead focussing purely on the amount of storage available.
Personal customers can subscribe to 20GB, 200GB or 2TB for $1, $5, or $10 a month - annual subscriptions and lifetime or ‘perpetual’ licenses are also available, giving you a great amount of flexibility for any budget.
Business customers can gain access to larger amounts, including 200GB, 2TB and 20TB. These require a minimum of two users, and prices start at $5, $10, and $95 a month. However, business plans don’t feature a lifetime license.
Like its competition, Internxt offers discounts for annual commitments. Payments are taken in euros, which may present some difficulties with certain banking platforms.
Internxt also has an Enterprise plan for an unlimited number of team members. You’ll have to contact the support team for a quote based on your needs. It’s also easy for you to upgrade your plan at any time - you’ll never have to worry if your storage requirements change.
All plans offer complete use of all of Internxt's secure services, including Internxt Drive, a zero-knowledge file storage service, Internxt Photos, which enables you to store photos privately and securely, and Internxt Send, a platform for you to send files safely and seamlessly.
Internxt's pricing, even when converted to other currencies, is especially competitive when compared with some of the key players in the game, including Apple iCloud and Google Drive.
An exclusive deal for TechRadar readers means you can save 50% of all plans, too. Just use the code TECHRADAR at the check to save even more money.
All plans come with a 30-day money back guarantee and given that you need to already have an account to sign up, we recommend trying out the free features first before handing over your credit card details.
As a relatively new offering, Internxt’s features are pretty basic. We’ve broken down some of the key ones here.
Internxt is available on desktop, mobile, or tablet, so you can conveniently access your files on any device. With its automatic syncing capability, Internxt ensures your information will be updated and saved regardless of the device you’re using.
It offers its users handy offline access to their files. This means that you don’t have to frantically search for a network connection in order to access your documents out of range. You can enable selective offline access to all the files in your inventory.
One of the company’s strong points is its commitment to security, however a lot goes on behind the scenes. Internxt wants to make the process as normal as possible while maintaining the best protocol.
For business users, the service enables you and your team to store files with total security. You can collaborate privately with other members and toggle your admin features. You can even decide how many times you want a given link to be valid/shared so that your file won’t be accessible outside of its intended audience. This is particularly useful for sensitive documents.
All plans have derestricted file sizes, which is great for people working on videos and other large media types.
Internxt: Interface & experience
Choosing a plan and creating an account on Internxt is quick and fuss-free. In fact, of all the cloud storage providers we reviewed, this is by far the fastest sign up. Simply enter your e-mail address and chosen password to log in immediately to the web interface.
Upon doing this, you’ll find a handy introductory guide that you can access to get a quick tutorial on how the service works, which we thought was a nice touch. You can also click your account profile at the top right to download the desktop app for the device. You’ll receive 1GB extra storage for your trouble.
Internxt’s interface on mobile, web, and desktop is clean, intuitive, and user-friendly. On its main page, you can view all your files at a glance. You can also easily customize your folders with different colors and icons similar to the native tagging features in macOS and Windows. A useful search function helps you quickly locate files without having to spend time scrolling through your entire drive.
Uploading new files onto the cloud is also a breeze with a drag-and-drop interface. Similarly, you can easily share your files through a link. Overall, Internxt’s intuitive dashboard is easy to use and streamlines your workflow.
There are two aspects to the desktop client. First is the tool that sits in the status bar, allowing a certain degree of control and an insight into your syncing activity. Unlike many competitors, there is no option here to throttle bandwidth usage, which would be useful for companies and individuals processing large amounts of documents alongside other streaming activity.
The second aspect is the built-in support for your computer’s native file management system - in our case, Finder for macOS. You can use the newly created 'Internxt' folder in your home directory to continue life as normal with plenty of dragging and dropping, while keeping things synced.
You can also use the desktop client to launch the web interface, which is necessary for certain operations. On first launch the screen is grayed out except for the "upload files" button. During our tests we noticed that this also happened even when we'd already uploaded some files, forcing us to click the button, then 'cancel' on the explorer window that opened. This was a small bug but could prove irritating if you have to upload many files.
While Internxt’s primary focus is on cloud storage, there is a cloud backup service available to all free and paid accounts too - though remember the limitations of free accounts. You can also pick which folders to sync and any changes made in these will be updated online. We have previously complained about cloud drives that occupy a single folder, so being able to sync multiple folders across various locations is kindly welcomed.
In terms of support, a pop-up live chat box will instantly appear when you navigate to Internxt’s site. Chat support is pretty responsive—we got a reply in eight minutes. If you’d prefer to troubleshoot on your own, you can access Internxt’s Help Centre from the same pop-up box as the live chat function. On the search bar, type any keyword that you’re looking for and you’ll be greeted with dozens of helpful articles from the team.
If you still can’t find what you’re looking for, Internxt’s support team is contactable via email 24/7 and provides support in English, Spanish, and Russian.
Security is where Internxt shines. The zero-knowledge file storage service is based on absolute privacy and uncompromising security. When you upload a file on Internxt, it’s instantly encrypted on your device. Unlike other mainstream services that encrypt customer data in transit or at rest, the service encrypts all your data before it leaves your device. When data is downloaded from the file to your device, it's also automatically decrypted.
Additionally, Internxt doesn’t store user data in any central location. Instead, data gets fragmented prior to being uploaded, and the encrypted file shards are then uploaded onto servers based in different locations around the world. A single server never holds a whole file, making the cloud storage very secure, robust, and private.
With its AES-256 CTR encryption model, no one else other than you holds the key to your data. If Internxt were to be hacked, intruders wouldn’t be able to access your data either.
On the consumer’s end, two-factor authentication (2FA) is easy to enable. There is no support for SMS authentication. This can be handy for people with phone and computer integration and autofill but is actually a point in Internxt's favor as SMS messages are much easier to intercept than codes generated by legitimate authenticator apps.
Even users without an account have access to the company’s free virus scanner which works by uploading a document - up to 1GB in size - to the website in order for it to be checked.
Internxt also provides a free password checker, which shows any relevant information such as that it is a frequently used or easily guessed, as well as the amount of leaks that this password has been found in and how long it would take for somebody to crack your password. It also lets you know if your password has been leaked in any public hacks recently.
There’s some handy guidance, too, for creating the ultimate password, though we still recommend using six or more words generated by Diceware.
One of the best security aspects of Internxt though is its commitment to open source. This means that the company has released the source code used to make its app so knowledgeable programmers can verify that end-to-end encryption has been set up correctly, as well as the fact that data is split into multiple clusters.
We found Dropbox gives Internxt a run for its money thanks to its advanced file-sharing capabilities and software integration. Similarly, Microsoft OneDrive is a great alternative with its files-on-demand feature.
The two competitors offer a range of useful tools and great functionality at about the same price point. To enjoy these features, however, you may have to compromise on privacy and security: Dropbox and OneDrive do not offer zero-knowledge encryption. Unlike other products which do claim to offer 'zero knowledge' Internxt is also open source, which means you don't have to take your word for it that your data's safe.
Internxt: Our tests
We ran three key tests for Internxt, measuring sync speed, file recovery and versioning.
Our tests were done on a Windows 11 virtual machine running the Internxt desktop client. The VM was connected to the internet via fiber broadband via VPN server, which in our speed tests consistently showed an average upload speed of 70 Mbps Measuring metrics like upload speed, results can sometimes vary depending on factors including how many share the broadband connection, how busy the cloud providers servers are, and your connection speeds.
Test 1 - Sync speed
After closing all third-party and internet apps, we copied a 650 MB folder of Sherlock Holmes audio books from the Internet Archive into the application directory and measured how quickly the desktop client was able to sync the files to the cloud. The folder contained 22 files including MP3s, images, metadata files and a PDF.
Initially we tried to use the web interface to upload the folder containing our test files. Unfortunately, this didn't work as the interface doesn't seem to allow uploading folders - only one or more files.
Instead we copied the test folder to the 'Internxt' folder in our device's home folder. The desktop client started syncing files, showing each one as it was successfully uploaded. This is where we saw the files being encrypted as each upload took place.
We were particularly impressed to see the encryption process didn't impact at all on speed. The whole upload of 625MB of data on our 70Mbps connection took only 1 minute 55 seconds. This is comparable to other cloud storage services we've reviewed that don't use encryption.
Test 2 - File recovery
In this test we simply deleted the audiobook folder from the application directory, removing it from the device. We then checked to see if the files had been removed from the cloud drive and if it was possible to recover them.
If the cloud provider offers you a way to store files in the cloud without keeping them on your device, we test this feature too.
After we deleted the test files from the 'Internxt' folder we were surprised to see that the data still counted towards our data quota in the desktop client.
On logging into the web interface, we immediately saw the Trash option with the deleted folder. With two clicks of the mouse, the data was decrypted and downloaded back to the device within 90 seconds.
Test 3 - Versioning
If you're working on long or important documents, the last thing you want is to make changes you can't undo. Some cloud providers prevent this by regularly saving different versions of a file. This means if you change something you shouldn't have, you can just roll the file back to before this happened.
To test this we copied a Microsoft Word (.docx) file of the public domain story 'The Purple Cloud' to the cloud application folder. Once it synced, we then deleted all the text except the introduction, then saved and closed. We then tried to restore the document back to its original form, complete with all chapters.
We did place our test document into the Internxt folder and deleted some text but there was little point. When we logged in to the web interface we saw there was no 'file version' feature, so clearly Internxt doesn't save multiple copies of edited files.
We did take this opportunity to try out the 'Preview' feature. However, this didn't work for the Microsoft Word document or an MP3 file we tried opening.
Internxt’s affordable pricing plans, intuitive interface, and reliable support make it a great cloud storage service to consider. It doesn’t offer the same advanced features like file versioning that you’ll find with Dropbox and OneDrive. But personal and business users prioritizing security will enjoy the cloud service provider’s advanced security features and commitment to privacy.
We rate Internxt highly for its range of useful features, including its interface which most users will find already familiar, the option to backup folders elsewhere on your computer, and the free, out-of-plan virus and password tools.
Most popular email platforms are free, but nothing is really free. In exchange for using free email services like Gmail and Yahoo Mail, you agree to let them harvest your data for advertising purposes to earn revenue. Understandably, many people are not comfortable with such an arrangement and seek encrypted email alternatives.
Tutanota is one of the best secure email providers. It doesn’t have ads but, instead, relies on donations and premium subscriptions to earn revenue. Tutanota is open-source and customizable, meaning third parties are free to analyze its encryption standards and confirm. The platform claims to have over 2 million users worldwide, which is impressive for something that’s been around for just a decade.
Tutanota is formally blocked in some countries such as Egypt and Russia but users in these countries can still access it via Tor or a VPN network.
Tutanota: Plans and pricing
Tutanota offers a free account with limited features; it gives just 1 GB of storage and access to one calendar. You’ll need to upgrade to a premium plan for more features.
This platform offers two plans for individual users; Revolutionary and Legend. The former costs $3.60 per month and gives you access to 20 GB of storage, unlimited calendars, 15 extra email address, 3 custom domains, and email support. The latter costs $9.60 per month and gives you access to 500 GB of storage, unlimited calendars, 30 extra email addresses, 10 custom domains, and priority email support.
Tutanota offers three plans for businesses; Essential, Advanced, and Unlimited. The Essential plan costs $7.20 per user per month and gives access to 50 GB of storage, unlimited calendars, 15 extra email addresses, 3 custom domains, and email support.
The Advanced plan costs $9.60 per user per month and provides 500 GB of storage, 30 extra email addresses, and 10 custom domains. The Unlimited plan costs $14.40 per user per month and provides 1000 GB of storage, unlimited custom domains, and 30 extra email addresses.
You’ll get a significant discount on all plans if you pay for 12 months in one go.
Tutanota offers many beneficial features, including
End-to-End Email Encryption
End-to-end encryption refers to a communication protocol that prevents any third party from accessing information as it’s transferred from one email to another. In this case, even Tutanota can not access your email contents to run any analysis whatsoever.
This platform uses 128-bit AES encryption and 2048-bit RSA encryption to protect emails. You can still send non-encrypted emails to users of other platforms; the email is only encrypted between your address and Tutanota's servers but is sent unencrypted to the recipient.
If you send encrypted mail to an external unencrypted email platform, the recipient will receive a link to a temporary Tutanota account to read the email securely.
Mobile & Desktop Apps
Tutanota offers native apps for both desktop and email devices. You can download the iOS app on Apple's App Store or the Android app via the APK or F-Droid software repository. You can also download the desktop app on Windows or macOS. Likewise, you can access Tutanota directly on your web browser if that’s what you prefer.
Tutanota offers a complimentary calendar app that you can use to plan your schedule. Users on the free plan can create just one calendar but users on the premium plans can create and manage multiple calendars. Your calendars are encrypted just like your emails so you can plan your schedule securely. You can also share your calendars with friends, family, or colleagues that have a Tutanota account.
You can create emails using your custom domain name as the suffix. A custom domain looks professional, which is why businesses use it. A custom domain isn’t available on the free plan, so you have to subscribe to a premium plan to get access to this feature.
Tutanota has been compliant with Europe's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) laws since 2018. This means European users can request their data from the company or request a permanent deletion. Even, Tutanota deletes free accounts that have not been logged into for 6 months.
Tutanota: Interface and use
Tutanota is known for having a simple, intuitive interface. The interface is minimal and uncluttered, so you shouldn’t have a problem understanding it. You can switch between different features easily.
You can access Tutanota on your web browser or download the app on your desktop or mobile phone. The disadvantage for Android smartphone users is that Tutanota isn’t available on the Play Store. Instead, you must download and install the APK directly or use the F-Droid repository, which is pretty complex for the average user.
Tutanota offers customer support via email. You can send an email to the support team and wait for a few days for a reply. Customers on the most expensive plans get priority support, which implies a response within 24 hours.
You also have access to complimentary support resources such as tutorials and user guides on the official website.
Tutanota: The competition
Protonmail is a major competitor to Tutanota. It’s one of the most popular encrypted email services out there and offers broader features than Tutanota. For instance, a Proton Mail subscription includes access to a calendar, cloud storage, and virtual private network (VPN) service.
Tutanota: Final verdict
Tutanota provides users with an exceptional level of security and privacy. The service is affordable and incredibly easy to access. Support features are lacking, and a 48-hour verification process might put off some users, but if security is your primary concern when choosing an email provider, there's not much better than Tutanota.
The most popular email platforms, such as Gmail and Yahoo Mail, are free. But you’ll be right to wonder why you’re using a service for free. No one will really spend lots of money on a product just to give it out for free, right? Yes, in exchange for using these free services, you agree to allow the owners to access your data for advertising purposes to earn revenue. Many people aren’t comfortable with this arrangement, and, thus, seek alternative email services that don’t harvest data. StartMail is one such service.
StartMail was founded in 2013 in the Netherlands. 2013 was the year of notable global surveillance leaks, so you’ll observe a lot of secure email providers popping up in that year.
StartMail offers an alternative, secure email service that doesn’t harvest user data to make a profit. Instead, it profits by offering a subscription package to users.
StartMail: Plans and pricing
StartMail offers two pricing plans; Personal and Custom Domain. As the names suggest, the former gives you an email account ending with "startmail.com" and the latter gives you an account ending with your custom domain.
The Personal plan costs $6 per month and the Custom Domain plan costs $7 per month. You can also pay a discounted rate of $60 annually for the former and $70 for the latter.
StartMail gives a 40% discount to new customers in the first year, but you’ll pay the normal price in the ensuing years. You can take advantage of the 7-day free trial to test the platform’s features before making your final decision.
StartMail offers many helpful features, including:
End-to-end email encryption
End-to-end encryption refers to a security protocol that prevents any third party from accessing data while in transit. StartMail encrypts your emails on its servers, and they can only be decrypted on the recipient’s servers. If anyone intercepts the data in transit, it’ll be gibberish to them because they don’t have the decryption keys.
StartMail uses the Pretty Good Privacy (PGP) encryption protocol. This protocol uses public and private keys to encrypt your data and prevent unauthorized access. StartMail encrypts your message using public encryption keys that the recipient's server provides. Once the recipient gets the message, it then uses its private keys to decrypt it.
PGP also uses digital signatures to check if any message has been altered in transit and block the message if detects any such altering.
End-to-end encryption means that even StartMail can not access your emails. Neither can it provide your email’s contents to any legal body that requests it.
Businesses and individuals often need custom domains for their emails because it makes them look more professional. StartMail allows you to use your personal domain for your emails and look professional. You just need to adjust your domain’s settings to point to StartMail’s mail servers.
StartMail gives each subscriber up to 20 GB of cloud storage for their emails. That’s enough storage for most individuals and is more than what you’d find on many popular email platforms.
An alias is an alternative email address that forwards to your main address. It acts as a “front” to your main email address. The purpose of using an alias is to avoid giving out your main email address when interacting with people or apps.
StartMail allows you to generate an unlimited number of aliases. For example, if your email is firstname.lastname@example.org, you can create email@example.com to receive newsletters, firstname.lastname@example.org to receive work-related messages, email@example.com for academic matters, etc.
A major problem preventing people from switching email providers is potential data loss. To mitigate this, StartMail makes it easy to migrate from an alternative email platform to its own. It works with the ShuttleCloud platform, which allows you to migrate emails securely. You can export all your messages and contacts from other email platforms, e.g., Gmail, to StartMail.
Two-factor authentication is a security feature that requires two modes of identification before granting access to your account. The first mode is your password and the second is a one-time code sent to your phone number.
You can enable two-factor authentication to protect your StartMail account. Hence, an unauthorized party will not gain access to your account even if they somehow get hold of your password.
StartMail complies with Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) laws. Hence, you can request instant account and data deletion whenever you want.
StartMail: Interface and use
StartMail has an intuitive and modern interface. You’ll likely find it easy to navigate the platform and switch between different features. However, StartMail doesn’t have a native mobile or desktop app, unlike some rivals. You can add it to an existing email app such as Apple Mail, but it’s a more complicated process.
StartMail offers direct support to users via email. You can submit your request on a form on the official website or email directly. You can also check the Knowledge Base containing user guides and answers to frequently asked questions.
Proton Mail is the main competitor to StartMail that we’ll like to highlight. It offers a slick and intuitive interface just like StartMail. It goes further by having mobile apps (iOS and Android), unlike StartMail. Proton Mail also gives access to complementary tools such as a calendar and a virtual private network (VPN).
StartMail: Final verdict
If you’re looking for a secure email provider with a user-friendly interface, StartMail is a good choice. It’s not exactly cheap but it’s not so expensive compared to the competition. It offers good value for your money.
Opera was founded in 1995, which makes it one of the oldest browsers (even older than Chrome and Edge), which adds to its credibility. While its earlier versions were known to be slow and featureless, the recent updates have put it on par with the competitors.
In fact, in some areas, such as performance and security, Opera has surpassed other popular browsers with its consistent and remarkable service. If you’re planning to give Opera another try or have yet to experience it, read this guide till the end to find everything you need to know about whether it's the best browser for you.
Opera browser: Features
Opera is perhaps one of the only widely recognized browsers that provides a free VPN to all users. Sure, Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge provide an option to use VPN, but both are paid services. VPN-enabled browsing is undoubtedly far safer than any incognito mode or private browsing mode.
It also comes with a built-in adblocker that gives you a seamless browsing experience without the distraction of pop-ups. Also, since pop-ups from unknown websites could be bait from hackers, keeping them blocked is a great way to protect your system against such digital attacks. Another notable benefit of having ads blocked is the browser will load much faster.
Opera also integrates with many popular social media sites such as Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok. If you frequently use these platforms on the web, Opera’s instant access feature will definitely benefit you. Opera also integrates with Whatsapp and lets you chat through a small Whatsapp window on the sidebar as you browse online. It's the perfect way to work online while collaborating with your team.
One of Opera’s most unique features is the “Lucid Mode,” which instantly improves the quality of your videos and images with a click. Opera has also made managing web snapshots easier than ever. While traditionally, you had to go back to the folder where any snapshots you’ve taken are saved to edit them, Opera allows you to edit them as soon as you capture the screen.
If you want to watch videos as you work, Opera has the perfect solution for you — Video Pop-Up. Using this, you can make the video window float on the screen as you browse other things. The same goes for music and podcasts — you can play any audio in the background as you work. Unlike music on YouTube that disappears as soon as you close the tab, this feature will keep the music running at all times.
Opera provides you with an easy way to save and share web content that you frequently browse, all thanks to its Pinboards feature. Additionally, you can share this saved content visually with other users.
Opera browser: Privacy
Opera has a high standard for user privacy. For starters, it provides a free VPN to all its users so that none of you have to worry about your activities being tracked.
Secondly, it blocks all ads and pop-ups that could possibly lead you to websites that steal data.
Thirdly, you get a tracker blocker that's specially designed to keep away third-party tools that are infamous for stealing your data.
These features come together to not only keep your data safe but also reduce the load time, lighten the load on your CPU and RAM, and boost the overall performance of your device.
Opera browser: Ease Of use
Opera is certainly easy to use, but if you compare it against the likes of Chrome or Edge, you might find it a tad bit difficult to operate.
For instance, when you open the browser, you won't find the search bar at the center of the page. The only way to open new tabs is through the top header, where all the tabs are lined up, just like Chrome.
But on the flip side, the central space of the main page is used to introduce you to important features such as Bookmarks, Dark/Light Mode, VPN, Adblocker, and more. Plus, Opera comes preinstalled on a lot of devices, thus saving you any effort you might have to put into installing it.
Accessing your social media apps via Opera is easy too. You’ll find all the necessary shortcuts on the left-side menu of the screen.
Opera browser: Competitors
As with other tier 2 browsers, Opera faces tough competition from Chrome, Edge, and Firefox.
For example, while Chrome offers a paid VPN service, Opera offers it for free. Chrome takes up too much space and slows down your system, whereas Opera is fast and responsive. Along with that, Chrome has faced several lawsuits and allegations for leaking user data, but Opera is widely renowned for its safe network.
The same goes for Edge. When compared for privacy and security, Opera is the clear winner. Edge’s privacy settings are rather basic and limited. Opera not only has a wide range of security settings but many features, such as an intuitive ad-blocker, are set by default. This way, your browsing experience remains secure from day one.
Speaking of Firefox and Opera, the latter is a few brownie points above the former with faster loading, enhanced tracking protection, and a built-in tracker blocker.
Opera browser: Final verdict
Opera is a comprehensive browser with enough in it to win you over. It provides you with a secure browsing space like no other and offers a free VPN too, which further adds to your protection.
Despite not being one of the top contenders in the market, Opera’s catalog of features is praiseworthy. Starting from multiple browser themes and integrated social media platforms to AI integration and simpler task management, Opera does it all.
Last but not least, Opera takes much less space and CPU power than Chrome, meaning your system and other apps work smoother.