Dropbox got blocked in China in 2010. It was probably due to Chinese authorities finding politically sensitive material being shared or stored via the US-based cloud syncing site. However, in a surprise move, Dropbox is now unblocked in China, Tech in Asia has discovered.
It’s not clear when Dropbox became unblocked in China. We noticed it was accessible in the country late last week, and then we waited a few days to verify it wasn’t a freak result and also to check that it’s available throughout the country. In addition to personal cloud syncing, we’ve also verified that sharing files publicly via Dropbox now works in the country. (Update: A couple of readers point out they’ve noticed Dropbox was accessible in China at some points late last year, but it was unstable and unpredictable. While it is currently very solid and fast in China, we wouldn’t recommend relying on Dropbox if you’re visiting the country).
No such luck for Google Drive, which has been stuck behind the Great Firewall since the day it launched in early 2012.
However, Dropbox’s new-found accessibility in China might not be big news for Dropbox itself, as China’s web speeds to overseas servers are woeful, whether a website is controversial or not. That makes nearly all overseas web services a pain to use. It also means that the numerous Chinese personal cloud services – from Baidu’s WangPan to Tencent’s WeiYun – are a lot more attractive.
Plus, China’s web giants are offering a hell of a lot more free space. Tencent’s 10TB – yes, ten terabytes – of free space beats out Dropbox’s laughable 2GB.
(See also: Here’s a list of websites blocked in China)
(Editing by Josh Horwitz)