Google Drive (not to be confused with Google’s existing internal Gdrive project, code-named Platypus) is a web application to allow Google users – those with a Google account – to store their files, accessible everywhere. Let’s hand out 100 Gigabytes for starters, just to have some wow factor like when Gmail was released (and like Gmail, Google Drive ought to start out as invite-only Beta).
Google Drive — Google’s rumored cloud storage service—is all but official, yet one question remains: how much freedom will we have with the space? If this alleged Google Drive code suggesting third-party apps will be allowed to access the storage is legit, it might be as open as we all hope.
According to the blog Google Operating System, the Google Docs source code has been making repeated references to Google Drive, and an SDK, and an “open with” command. And some marketing copy they found indicates that it will do away with Gmail attachments, much like Microsoft plans to do with SkyDrive.
There’s also an interesting message that suggests Google Drive will integrate even more with Gmail: “Say goodbye [to] email attachments and hello to real time collaboration. Drag anything shared with you to My Drive for easy access.”
Google Drive seems like it’s shaping up to be something interesting, and for Android users, maybe even awesome.
However, although we do not know the nature of these services, we can deduce perfectly the ambition of Google with this service and the harsh competition that can arise with Dropbox. Dropbox is a service and very settled in our computers.
We’ve already seen What Google Music should do to compete with iTunes Store to become #1 and now, Google is expanding in Cloud Storage business too, so, here are some of the points to be considered:
Maintain a Simple and Intuitive Interface
As we already know that Google’s Popularity lies in its simplicity, they should continue with it. This is essential and common to any Web service to present some complexity. If the user encounters an interface full of options and tools, he/she can be overwhelmed.
Google has a line of products simplifying the interface for all web services and testing several top bars to unify into a single design, so I just would need to continue that trend to achieve this.
Seamless integration with any operating system and with other Google services
One of the best points of Dropbox is that it is just a folder system OS X, Windows or Linux. The program is completely invisible, we don’t even know what we’re using. The same goes for the synchronization method: we can move files to Dropbox and how crazy it is responsible for updating any changes in the background with a symbol indicating this on the icon. If Google Drive wants to be presented as a serious alternative to Dropbox, it should offer the same or something even more advantages. And that is quite difficult.
Similarly, any Google Drive should be able to interact with Google Services- Gmail, Google Reader, Google + YouTube, there are many possibilities. And if I mention Chrome OS on Chromebook and its potential for Google Drive could be “hard” storage of the system, this would be a big push for this product.
Enough Free Space
This is where I think Google can do battle. The Mountain View company has always been a pioneer in offering huge amounts of space to users (I still remember how that initial GB of space on Gmail surprised everyone), and a basic 2GB Dropbox (no, all these tricks to open space do not count) is a point easily overcome.
Reasonable Prices For Additional Storage
What if we want more space? This is another weakness of Dropbox: $9.99 per month (or 99 per year) to get 50 GB enough pull back, while on Google, you can get 80 GB of additional space for $20 a year. If these fees apply to Google Drive, would not surprise me to see many people daring to expand their space paid.
Last but not least, a Google Drive with public or private folders from certain users groups encourage collaborative work as is happening with Dropbox.
For now, Just wait and watch whether Google has prepared G-Drive as a decent alternative and attractive. Till then,
* this image is just for illustrated
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