After six years of rumors and speculation, Google finally launched its cloud storage service, Google Drive. It comes with 5GB free storage and is available on Windows, Mac and Android. The iPhone and iPad app will be coming soon.
Google Drive one-ups the competition with its ability to open over 30 different file formats on the browser including HD video, Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop, even if the respective programs are not installed on the computer. The closest competitor in this aspect is Microsoft SkyDrive, which allows you to open and edit Office documents via Office Web Apps without the need for Office to be installed on your computer.
The integration with Google Docs enables you to work with others in real-time on documents, spreadsheets and presentations. In addition, you can add and reply to comments on shared content, and receive notifications whenever other people make comments.
Besides searching for content by keyword, file type and owner, Google Drive also utilizes Optical Character Recognition (OCR) Technology to recognize text in scanned documents.
If 5GB is not sufficient for your needs, you can purchase extra storage space. For example, a 25GB account will cost US$2.49 per month while a 100GB account will set you back US$4.99 per month. Other storage plans and their pricing are available here.
Although the Google Drive website has gone live, the service is still not available for some users. Nevertheless, you can sign up for the service first and be notified via email when your Google Drive is ready. Meanwhile, you can head over to the Google Drive website to find out more about its features. You also can download the Google Drive app from Google Play.