Google Drive Online Storage Review
|Free Trial:||0 days - Try now.|
|Free Storage Plan:||5 GB|
|Max Storage Plan:||16 TB|
Google Drive Plans & Pricing
- 25 GB: $2.49/mo
- 100 GB: $4.99/mo
- 200 GB: $9.99/mo
- 400 GB: $19.99/mo
- 1 TB: $49.99/mo
- 2 TB: $99.99/mo
- 4 TB: $199.99/mo
- 8 TB: $399.99/mo
- 16 TB: $799.99/mo
- Same as above
Google Drive Security Features
- SSL Encryption
- Encrypted Transfer
- Password Protection
- Folder Permissions
Google Drive Access Options
|Platforms:||Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, Mac OS|
|All File types?|
Google Drive Review for June 2013
After months of anticipation, Google Drive finally went live during the last week of April. Bloggers had been speculating about Google’s entry into the online file storage market for a while, especially after pictures of a Google Drive website were leaked a few weeks early. With Google’s considerable resources in mind, we were all anxious to see what Google could deliver.
Google Drive is a well-rounded file storage service that operates in a manner similar to Dropbox. The service provides online storage space, file syncing and file sharing in a simple web interface just like every other major online file storage company. Customers can purchase specific amounts of storage space and store their most important files online.
The primary purpose of Google Drive is to give customers a safe place to store their files online. If you have important documents that you need to access from home, work and while on vacation, you can store them online and have access to them anywhere you go. Plus, Google Drive adds an extra layer of protection in case your laptop goes missing or your hard drive fails.
Google Drive Features
Google Drive follows the same “simple but powerful” tradition that Google has kept since the beginning. The features list of Google Drive isn’t long, but the features it offers work well and are easy to use. Additionally, Google Drive is open to third party development, so we expect to see lots of useful Google Drive apps and app integration in the future.
5 GB Free Space: The feature that is sure to get the most notice right off the bat is a free chunk of storage space for anyone who wants it. Google Drive is offering 5 gigs of free space for anyone that signs up for an account. You can use this space for as long as you want without paying anything.
File Syncing: Google Drive has a desktop client that you can install on any computer. This client allows you to create synced folders between your computer, your online storage account and other computers that you own. This gives you the ability to create a file at home, save it in your sync folder and then view that file at work later without having to send the file to yourself via e-mail.
Collaboration: The collaboration features of Google Drive are impressive. You can invite other people to work with you, edit documents and comment on files. This is all pretty standard, but the impressive thing here is that you and someone else can edit the same document at the same time and see changes to that document in real time as they appear. I’ve never seen online collaboration work quite like this.
File Sharing: There are several file sharing options with Google Drive. If you want to send a file to someone else who has Google Drive, you can add that file to that person’s Google Drive account. You can also share files via Gmail notifications or create download links that you can give to anyone that needs a file.
File Versioning: Google Drive automatically saves revisions of your files for 30 days. Every change that you save is logged and can be undone for up to 30 days. You can also choose to save specific versions of files forever in your Drive account.
View Most Files Online: One of the coolest features of Google Drive is its ability to show you files of all different types. You can even view file types for programs that you don’t have on your computer. For example, Google Drive can display Adobe Photoshop files in your web browsers even if you don’t own a copy of Photoshop. You can also view movies, pictures and dozens of other file types online.
Third Party Apps: Google Drive has an open API that invites developers to create their own apps for Google Drive. These apps provide additional functionality that doesn’t come with Google Drive by default. This will also make it easier for other services to integrate themselves with Google Drive.
Search: Not surprisingly, Google Drive has a powerful search feature that can help you find your files easily. The search function can find files based on keywords and categories and can even recognize objects in pictures. So if you have a picture of a computer and search for “computer,” Google Drive can find that file.
Pros and Cons
Google Drive has its pros and cons. On the positive side, Google usually gets new products right. This service works well, stores your files safely online and is easy to use. The features are all very useful. And best of all, the pricing scheme is cheaper than most other alternatives.
Unfortunately, Google Drive also has a couple of downsides. For one, there is no customer support. The only way you can get help with Google Drive is by posting in the discussion forums and hoping someone happens to see your question and answer it. Customer support has always been a huge problem for Google.
The other major negative is that Google has a sketchy privacy history. Google likes to store information about its customers and share that information across a variety of its own products. Even after multiple privacy statements, it’s unclear how exactly Google uses your information. It’s anyone’s guess as to what Google will do with your file storage information.
Google Drive Support
Customer support has never been one of Google’s strong points. Unfortunately, customer support is virtually nonexistent with Google Drive. There is a large knowledge base that can answer most questions and a discussion forum for more advanced inquiries.
Other than that, you’re on your own when it comes to Google Drive. There is no e-mail address, contact form or phone number. Google does not like dealing with customers. Use Google Drive only if you like Google products and are comfortable using them with no outside help.
Google Drive Plans and Pricing
Google Drive has a very competitive pricing structure. You can get 25 GB of storage space for just a couple dollars a month. This is significantly lower than other file storage services. Remember also that this is different than unlimited file storage because you can store files in your Google Drive, delete them off your computer and free up space at home. Unlimited file storage plans only mirror what you have on your computer.