Software & Apps Backup & Utilities Is Cloud Backup Different Than Online Backup? What's the Difference Between Online Backup & Cloud Backup? By Tim Fisher General Manager, VP, Lifewire.com Tim Fisher has 30+ years' professional technology support experience. He writes troubleshooting content and is the General Manager of Lifewire. our editorial process Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Tim Fisher Updated June 24, 2019 KTSDESIGN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY / Getty Images Backup & Utilities Design Cryptocurrency MS Office Windows Linux Google Drive Apps File Types Backup & Utilities View More Tweet Share Email Is "cloud" backup better than online backup? What exactly does it mean when someone says they're backing up something to the cloud? The following question is one of many you'll find in my Online Backup FAQ: "I keep hearing about cloud backup - is that different than online backup?" Some companies and industry experts prefer cloud backup over online backup but they're exactly the same thing. In other words, cloud backup and online backup are completely synonymous terms. I prefer online backup but again, it doesn't really matter. So why the difference at all? The cloud is a phrase generally referring to the internet itself and is a bit of a buzzword. Technically it comes from the idea of cloud computing which is a term used to describe the idea of multiple connected computers working together. Here are a few more related online backup questions that you might be interested in seeing the answer to: How Exactly Does Online Backup Work?Is Online Backup Better Than Local Backup? Here are more questions I answer as part of my Online Backup FAQ: How Do I Decide Which Online Backup Service to Pick?Is It Safe to Send & Store My Private Data on the Internet?How Long Will the Initial Backup Take?Will My Internet Be Slow If I'm Backing Up All the Time?Can I Restore Old Versions of Files I Back Up?Do I Have to Back Up Everything on My Computer or Device?What Exactly Should I Back Up?How Much Online Backup Space Will I Need?Do Some Online Backup Plans Really Allow Unlimited Data?Why Would Anyone Choose a Limited Plan over an Unlimited One?Are Online Backup Plans Priced by the Month or Year?Are Free Online Backup Plans Really Free or Just Free Trials?Do Online Backup Services Limit File Formats or Sizes?Can I Back Up All My Devices Using One Backup Plan?If My Backed Up Files Are Online, Can I Access Them Anywhere?Where Exactly Are My Backed Up Files Stored on the Internet?How Do I Restore a Backed Up File?If My Entire Computer Dies, How Can I Get My Files Restored?Why Aren't Dropbox, Google Drive, SkyDrive, Etc. In Your List?How Do You Rank Online Backup Services in Your Reviews?Where Is JustCloud & ZipCloud in Your Online Backup List?What Online Backup Service Do YOU Use, Tim?