iCloud vs Google Drive

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Apologies, wasn't sure where the best post this query but hoping someone can help. I am a long time user of Google services (Photos, Drive, Docs etc) but having now predominately moved across to all Apple devices I want to move all of my Cloud based storage from Google Drive to iCloud.

In Google Drive I have a large number of old home videos backed up and if I want to watch any of these I can select them from within Google Drive and they will start to stream. When I try to do the same in iCloud the videos are being downloaded to watch locally rather than being streamed. Is there any setting I need to turn on that will allow me to stream vides stored in iCloud or is this just a restriction of the service? If its a restriction is there any other way around this? Phots and music files still seem to open successfully via iCloud, it's just videos I am having issue with. My Apple devices don't have a huge amount of local storage so I don't want to suddenly clog them up by downloading a number of large video files.

Thanks!
 

Raz0rEdge

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iCloud is functioning as designed. It's a general data store that will keep a copy of the file locally and in the cloud. If the file is unused for a length of time, the local copy is removed while a link remains to the cloud version that will remain until you explicitly delete.

However, iCloud doesn't add a layer on the files allowing you to, for example, stream video files or view images in full size without downloading them locally first.

Even if you go to the web interface of iCloud, you can go to Drive and if you select a video, the file will be downloaded first for you to view.
 
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Thanks for confirming. So basically I don't need to worry about items taking up space - the OS is clever enough to know to remove them if I'm running short. So I don't need to go about manually deleting videos if I want to view them? Is that correct?
 

Raz0rEdge

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Thanks for confirming. So basically I don't need to worry about items taking up space - the OS is clever enough to know to remove them if I'm running short. So I don't need to go about manually deleting videos if I want to view them? Is that correct?
Almost. Once you connect to your iCloud drive, the files are all available to you. After some time of inactivity (not sure it's documented), files are removed from local storage. This isn't based on the amount of your local storage or anything, it's totally independent.

You also can't manually cause this process to happen and if you visit certain files at least once before the expiration time, it will continue to stay on your local drive.
 

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