All of you Google users out there have witnessed the introduction of the new Cloud Storage solution by Google: Google Drive. A place where you can upload your files and have them available across any platform and computer with a few clicks or taps. I myself, find Google Drive to be great! Now, I can transfer just about any document or picture from my Android Smartphone to my computer, to my laptop, anywhere I want.
And as a user of the old Google Docs, I find that Google Drive is much better. I can organize my files to folders as I wish, and it gives me a clean look and a easy to navigate interface. Also, the 5 GB included storage is more than enough for my needs, after all, documents don’t occupy all that much, and maybe in the future, when I decide to upload my photos also, I will upgrade to a bigger storage.
Dropbox or Google Drive?
But anyway, Google has done a marvelous job transforming Google Docs into a great service for cloud storage, Google Drive. But as Google has done so, there are others who have been doing this for quite some time now. Apple has the iCloud, Amazon has Cloud Storage, and many others (which we talked about in our free cloud storage guide). But probably the most known name in cloud storage is Dropbox.
And why is that? Because they have been doing this before Google, because people are accustomed to them and because they offer just about the same service as Google (some might even go as far as to say that they are too familiar). And that is true, both offer irreprochable services, both offer the possibility for upgrade and both create a folder on your hard drive for easy upload to your account. So you see, they both are the very top quality.
The free cloud space offered by default by Google Drive is 5 GB, compared to only 2 GB that Dropbox offers. But Dropbox gives you lots of possibilities to get more space by inviting others (this gives you 500MB of storage space on your account for every registered invite) and so on.
As far as pricing goes, Google Drive is cheap. For an upgrade to 25 GB for Google Drive and Picasa, you pay $2.49/Month and as a bonus, you get 25GB storage for Gmail. If you plan on buying more storage, you can get 100GB of storage for Google Drive and Picasa with $4.99 / Month. And you can go even more, up to 16TB of space. Google offers a well thought plan, that can suit anyone’s needs.
Dropbox on the other hand offers 50GB of additional space for $9.99 / Month or 100 GB for $19.99 / Month. Google Drive is by far, cheaper than Dropbox, but that is not enough to make it popular.
Dropbox has created a huge audience around it and has been dreaming about offering cloud storage to customer before such products like iCloud appeared. Steve Jobs referred to Dropbox as a “feature” not as a product. The smart entrepreneurs at Dropbox managed to prove him wrong. Will you stick with Dropbox or go with Google Drive’s cheaper cloud storage plans? If you’re like me, then you’re use both of them for a while to see which one performs better its duty and then make a wise decision.
User Experience and Sharing
The website environment is very easy to navigate on both services, the page is clean and it’s very easy to find your files. The sync process is also easy, a simple copy and paste process and in a matter of seconds your files are uploaded on your cloud storage. From here, you can access these files across a multitude of platforms, from Android Devices to iOS devices or other computers. Dropbox even requests you to install it on other devices so you can accomplish the first tasks and get another 256 MB of data storage.
Sharing is another big part of these cloud storage services and both allow you to share files very easy, with just a few clicks. One could say that Google Drive has a big advantage thanks to Google Docs and its seamless integration into Google Drive. I agree with that. If you’re co-working on a project with your colleagues, it would be much easier for you to access pictures, using the same product. Therefore, if you’re using Google Docs already, it’s inevitable that you’ll stumble across Google Drive many times.
And that’s where Google will have to win – from their huge amount of users. Dropbox has only the cloud storage business, that’s all they do while Google is an enormous company with much more money at hand. But more important then money are the people that will start using Google’s Drive. Just like with Google Plus, the audience won’t perceive it as being something new, because it isn’t; but the audience will see it as belonging to Google.
So if at one specific point I’ll start uploading and storing files on My Google Drive, that won’t scare me, because I use Google’s products on a day-to-day basis; why shouldn’t I believe in Google Drive? Why should I pay more money to Dropbox? I could choose Dropbox because I love start-ups and I support young entrepreneurs and fresh businesses. It’s all a matter of taste, after all.
Is There a Winner Between Google Drive and Dropbox?
How to decide which is best? Well, to be honest, you can’t! The only thing I can think of in deciding which to use is this: if you use Gmail, Picasa or other Google services, then it’s easier for you to use Google Drive. You have it in your services bar alongside the other services you use, and you already are accustomed to Google’s services.
If, on the other hand you are a Dropbox user for some time now, then use it from now on as well. Or, who knows, use both of them! Also, there are other websites that offer alternatives to these services, all working great and some offering even more space for your files. It would seem this is the way technology is moving. The concept of cloud storage is but a first step towards cloud computing.