Google has launched Google Drive, the much awaited storage service from Google. Drive is built to work seamlessly with your overall Google experience (i.e. across Google docs, G+, Picasa etc). You can attach photos from Drive to posts in Google+, and soon you’ll be able to attach stuff from Drive directly to emails in Gmail.
With Google Drive, you can:
- Create and collaborate. Google Docs is built right into Google Drive, so you can work with others in real time on documents, spreadsheets and presentations. Once you choose to share content with others, you can add and reply to comments on anything (PDF, image, video file, etc.) and receive notifications when other people comment on shared items.
- Store everything safely and access it anywhere (especially while on the go). All your stuff is just… there. You can access your stuff from anywhere—on the web, in your home, at the office, while running errands and from all of your devices. You can install Drive on your Mac or PC and can download the Drive app to your Android phone or tablet. We’re also working hard on a Drive app for your iOS devices. And regardless of platform, blind users can access Drive with a screen reader.
- Search everything. Search by keyword and filter by file type, owner and more. Drive can even recognize text in scanned documents using Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology. Let’s say you upload a scanned image of an old newspaper clipping. You can search for a word from the text of the actual article. We also use image recognition so that if you drag and drop photos from your Grand Canyon trip into Drive, you can later search for [grand canyon] and photos of its gorges should pop up. [official blog post]
For now, the default storage is 5GB (free) and you can buy additional storage for a nominal fee ($5 USD/year for 20GB).
Important to note that Google has increased Gmail storage from 7.5GB to 10GB for everybody, post Google Drive launch.
A big threat to Dropbox as Google Drive is about the ecosystem of developers (and not just Google alone) across Google products (and across devices). In fact, the online/offline integration with Google docs makes it a great product and frankly, closes the loop on ‘online office’ suite (earlier Google launched Cloud Connect Plugin, which was a good start but didn’t really make any mark).
With Google Drive, things seems to be falling in line for Google, especially for leading the online office (r)evolution.
Do test ride Google Drive and share your comments.