The Internet giant has just introduced Google Drive, a platform to create and share, collaborate and retain all of your important data. It’s the company’s response to popular online storage tools such as Box.net, Dropbox, SugarSync, and Microsoft’s SkyDrive. It provides free online, synchronized 5GB of storage, with paid upgrades up to 1TB. With it, people can easily create, compile and collaborate on different text and visual material. What are its other key features?
- Activate Drive and Google Docs is no more required as a standalone destination, at least: Click on an old shortcut and you will get re-routed to drive.google.com. Your ‘Documents’ folder will now exist there as a subset of ‘My Drive’. Clicking a ‘Create’ button will now craft a new spreadsheet or presentation.
- Built right into Google Drive, Google Docs allows them to work with other people on documents, spreadsheets, presentations etc in real time. Once you opt to share certain content files, you can insert and reply to other people’s comments on anything, including PDF, image and video file, as well as receive notifications once someone else comments on those shared items. Users can store everything safely and access it anywhere, even while on the go). You can access it seamlessly and ceaselessly at the office, in your home, on the web, and from each of your Web-enabled device.
- You may install it (Drive) on your PC or Mac and then can download the Drive app to an Android device or tablet. The engineers are also working on a Drive app for iOS devices. Visually impaired (Blind) users can easily access Drive with a screen reader regardless of platform.
- Google Drive will naturally offer better integration with its online products.With it, you can search videos, PDFs, documents, photos etc with specific searches. It will search within each file for relevant matches. You may search by keyword as well as filter by file type and owner. Google Drive can recognize text embedded in scanned documents thanks to Optical Character Recognition technology. Image recognition will allow you to drag-n-drop photos from your vacation into Drive, to later search for them. OCR technology, in its early stages, will improve over time.
Also being an open platform, the company will work with third-party developers so that users can do useful things with Drive such as sending faxes, editing videos and creating website mockups directly from it. Outlining the uniqueness of Google Drive, an official blog post points out:
“Whether you are working with a friend on a joint research project, planning a wedding with your fiancé or tracking a budget with roommates, you can do it in Drive. You can upload and access all of your files, including videos, photos, Google Docs, PDFs and beyond. Drive is built to work seamlessly with your overall Google experience. 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. This is just the beginning for Google Drive; there’s a lot more to come.”
Users can start off with 5GB storage, as mentioned above, good enough to store your high-resolution images, scanned copies of treasured text, key business proposals, a favorite novel, and even an e-book you are currently working on. It is possible to upgrade for $2.49/month to 25GB.