Who in this generation of USB drives and external HDs could ever have imagined that we’d one day have the ability to access all our files wherever we are and on any device we had at the moment, as long as Internet connection was present?
That’s exactly how cloud storage works. It’s a new way to back up data—especially large files—without having to resort to limited mediums such as e-mail and physical devices. Cloud storage has become one of the technological marvels of our time because of its amazing convenience and reliability.
Then Dropbox took it further. This company is known as the pioneer of cloud storage, as it was the first to really bring the concept to mainstream attention. Dropbox had a function known as the ‘Magic Folder’, which allowed you to sync the files available on your folder to the cloud server, making them accessible even offline. Dropbox even allowed different people to edit one file, and had any changes to a file synced across all devices. With its developer-friendly platform (Dropbox is supported by most programs), offer of 2GB initial free storage, Dropbox has gone unchallenged in the cloud storage race for a long time.
But now, Google Drive has entered the race. This new application by Google is an upgrade to the old Google Documents, which had basic file storage capability. Google Drive is leaps and bounds ahead of its predecessor, offering extensive file storage space and advanced syncing options—similar in function to Dropbox.
But why choose Google Drive instead of Dropbox, if they’re essentially the same? Here are 5 reasons why:
1. Google Drive gives you more storage for free. When you download Google Drive, you instantly get 5GB of storage space, while Dropbox only gives you 2GB. This means that with Google Drive, there’s no need to worry over the limit of what you can save, because there’s more than twice as much memory for you to use.
2. Google Drive gives you more value for your money. If 5GB is not enough, Google Drive offers storage upgrades. Though payment is required for these updates, it is still easy on the wallet and has more value for money than Dropbox, known to be one of the most expensive applications in cloud storage. Dropbox also offers storage upgrades but at a much pricier rate—more than twice Google Drive’s.
3. Google Drive thrives on the Web. On Google Drive, you can open over 30 kinds of files on your browser—even if you don’t have the program installed on your computer. For example, you can view a file in Photoshop even though your computer doesn’t have Photoshop. Dropbox’s ability to view files is limited only to the programs the user has installed on his devices. Also, Google Drive allows you to preview and edit files and file types via browser without requiring you to download the file, whereas Dropbox doesn’t.
4. Google Drive is a better detective. One of Google Drive’s biggest strengths is its ability to search. The application makes use of OCR (Optical Character Recognition) text scanning to scan files saved as images, and looks for keywords to make them searchable. Google Drive makes even your photos searchable by categorizing them according to topic. Dropbox’s search ability is much more basic, and is limited to only certain parameters.
5. Google Drive offers more security. Dropbox requires only a name and password to get access to files. This makes it very susceptible to online crimes like hacking and theft. Google Drive, on the other hand, is linked to your Google account and therefore follows Google’s strict two-step authentication process there. It takes more time to log in, but it ensures that your files are kept safe.
The cloud storage industry is growing, and Google Drive and Dropbox are two of the major players. It’s time to get in on the hype. Which one are you going to choose?
Alexis Thompson is a Infotech Junkie, former Mountain Backpacker and a 26 year old mother of 2 daughters, Sophie and Rhian. She is into almost all types of Music especially The Fray and Hillsong. She also has a passion in Singing and Scrap Booking. Follow her escapades on her Twitter.