Google’s cloud storage service is finally available. It offers the promise of accessing files, even large ones, from any location or device. With Google Drive, you can create new documents, spreadsheets, presentations and charts, and easily share with others. There is the suggestion of collaborative work, by two or more, on the same document simultaneously. In reality, that is rarely feasible. Well, it is difficult to do productively. Shared access is convenient for meetings and small work groups though.
As with Google Docs, one may search by keyword, and filter by file type, owner or file size. Over 30 file types are accessible from your browser. This includes HD video, Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop— this part is key: File access does not require the program to be installed on your computer!
The first 5 GB of storage is free of charge for all Google accounts.
Google Drive may be used on a variety of computers and devices, including PCs, Macs and Android. iPhone and iPad support is “coming soon”.
The fate of Google Docs
Perhaps you are thinking,
This seems so similar to Google Docs!
I was too. Apparently that was by intent, as word has it that Google Drive will replace Google Docs for all users:
Precisely because Drive is just Docs with a new logo, Docs is being phased out. The site still works for now and will continue to work for months, but Google is pushing users away from the Docs URL and app and towards Drive.
I had noticed Docs was prompting me to try Drive recently. I suspect this was the reason. The URL will change from
http://drive.google.com. The final changeover date has not been announced.