Online retailer Amazon has confirmed that its Cloud Drive digital locker service is now available to customers in the UK, offering up to 5GB of free online storage.

Cloud Drive has been available in the US since March 2011, and competes with the likes of Dropbox, Apple iDrive, Google Drive and Microsoft's SkyDrive.

The service enables consumers to store their photos, documents, videos and other digital files in the cloud, where they will be protected in the case of a hard drive crash or the loss of a laptop or mobile device.

Additional capacity is available, starting at £6 per year for 20GB. Up to 50GB costs £16 per year, 100GB costs £32, 200GB costs £64, 500GB costs £160 and 1,000GB (one terabyte) costs £320.

The service is available to anyone with an Amazon account.

Last week, Amazon launched a low-cost enterprise cloud storage service called Glacier. The service is optimised for media archives, financial and healthcare records, raw genomic sequence data, long-term database backups, and information that has to be retained for regulatory compliance.

Amazon said that enterprises typically over-pay for data archiving, because of the upfront cost of an archiving solution, and also because many over-provision to make sure they have enough capacity for data redundancy and unexpected growth.

Glacier is currently available in the US-East (North Virginia), US-West (North California), US-West (Oregon), EU-West (Ireland), and Asia Pacific (Japan) Regions.

Storing data using Glacier costs from $0.01 per gigabyte per month. Its existing Simple Storage Service (S3) in comparison costs from between $0.125 and $0.055 per gigabyte per month for standard storage.