iCloud is a great way to push your photos to all your Apple devices and share photos with friends. However, iCloud is not intended for backup or archival storage of your photos. iCloud will store 1000 photos for 30 days. This gives you plenty of time to import your photos into iPhoto on your Mac. But iCloud is not a backup solution.
The good news is that there are some free options to keep your photos backed up in the cloud. (MacMaven still recommends keeping a local copy of your data, in addition to a cloud backup.) Here are some options. Click on each link to download the associated iOS app.
Amazon Cloud offers 5 GB of free storage. Amazon’s iOS app can be set to automatically upload your camera roll photos to the cloud.
Flickr is now offering a whopping 1 TB of free storage. Unless you’re a professional photographer, you’ll have more than enough room to back up your entire photo library to Flickr. iPhoto integrates with Flickr, allowing you to easily share (i.e. upload) your photos. The Flickr iOS app does not currently auto-upload photos from the camera roll. You’ll need to manually select photos from your camera roll to upload to Flickr, or take a photo from within the app.
Google Drive offers 5 GB of free storage. Like the Flickr app, the Google Drive app doesn’t automatically upload your camera roll photos.
The Dropbox app has an option to automatically upload your camera roll photos. Keep in mind that unless you pay for the Packrat feature, Dropbox is not a backup solution. If you delete your photos from your devices, they will only be retained in Dropbox for 30 days.