After a series of rumors, Google has finally launched its first cloud storage aka Google Drive on Tuesday. While many feel that the new Google cloud storage is just a rebranding of the existing Google Docs that syncs to a folder on your computer, the new system actually comes with some new sharing, integration and developer features that make it much more than a simple rebranding.
Google has packed 5GB space to play with for free, with options to pay $2.49/month for 25GB additional space, $5/month for 100GB and $50/month for a full terabyte of extra space.
Moreover, Drive doesn't restrict you from storing any types of files you choose in your cloud. From .mov files to Office docs and even APKs, any file sizing not more than 10GB can be stored, downloaded and shared in your groups, easily.
Are all the features enough for Google's Drive to outpace the king of the cloud storage and file syncing system, Dropbox or the newly launched Microsoft's SkyDrive?
Let's check how Drive stacks against these two great file syncing systems. Note that we have kept this comparison limited within a few aspects like Free Storage, Additional Storage, Platform Support, Folder Sync, Media Streaming and Pricing.
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Drive comes with 5GB of storage free, while Dropbox gives only 2GB of free storage and SkyDrive offers 7GB of free storage.
Drive's additional storage ranges from 25 GB to 16 terabytes on a basis of monthly subscription, Dropbox offers 50GB to 1TB or more on both monthly and yearly subscription basis. SkyDrive, on the other hand, provides 20GB to 100GB of additional storage on yearly subscription (find pricing comparison below).
File Size Limit
File size can go up to 10 GB for Drive while SkyDrive has a limit of 2GB of file size. For Dropbox, files uploaded to Dropbox via the desktop application have no file size limit. Files uploaded through the website have a 300 MB cap. In other words, each file you upload through the website must be 300 MB or less.
Drive can be installed on Mac, PC or Android phone/tablet, while an iOS version will be available in the coming weeks.
SkyDrive and Dropbox can be installed on Windows and Mac. And, Dropbox can additionally be installed on Linux. While both Microsoft and Google released apps for their own mobile platforms, each continues to snub the other's platform. Both Dropbox and SkyDrive have iOS versions. Note that Dropbox has both Android and iOS versions but does not offer Windows apps.
While all three systems give users drag and sync option, both Dropbox and Google Drive give them control over choosing the files they want to sync on the connected systems. But Microsoft said they wanted to keep the SkyDrive app as straightforward and easy to use as possible and thus, synchronize all the folders.
Google Drive's Monthly Subscription List
25GB for $2.49/month
100GB for $4.99/month
1TB for $49.99/month
16TB for $799.99/month
Dropbox Monthly/Yearly Subscription List
50GB for $9.99/monthly; $99/year
100GB for $19.99/monthly; $199/year
1Tb and up for $795 (min.) for five users
SkyDrive Yearly Subscription List
20GB for $10/year
50GB for $25/year
100GB for $50/year
Features that gives Drive Advantage
- Feature-Filled Web-apps
- Google's Powerful Search
- Built-in collaboration features
- Cheap monthly subscription
- Controllable syncing speed
- Still beats all competitors in third party app integration
- URL Links- Dropbox just released this feature that lets you have a unique URL for each of the file you share.
- At 7GB, SkyDrive offers the biggest free storage space among all the cloud services and users who signed up before April 22 can get 25 GB free for a limited time.
- Skydrive is cheaper on an annual basis.
We cannot declare any clear winner here as it's only your usage that can decide which service would work best for you. In case you want to tie-in all your Google Docs and Gmail and other Google services, Drive will be an obvious selection for you. If you need just a public link access and a spot to share, without being bothered about content creation, then Dropbox would be a smart choice for you. And SkyDrive would be your chosen service if you need Windows Phone and Microsoft Office compatibility.