Google Drive, Yea Or Nay?

Google may be getting ready to launch Google Drive, an online cloud storage service that will rival Apple’s iCloud, Microsoft’s SkyDrive or Dropbox… or maybe not.

The rumor has been going around the internet for a while now, but got a big boost from the Wall Street Journal earlier this week. The WSJ is reporting that Google is getting close to launching the new cloud storage service.

Like other cloud storage services, it’s expected that Google Drive would allow users to store documents and files on cloud based servers and retrieve them on multiple devices. For example, that photo of your child can be stored on a cloud and shown to others on your smartphone, tablet, or laptop. However, it would not be publically available. It’s being reported that Google Drive would be free up to a certain storage limit, and then be fee based for larger storage needs.

The most likely service to be threatened by Google Drive would be Dropbox, since iCloud is tied to Apple products and most of us average shoppers have never heard of SkyDrive. Late last year Dropbox reported that they have 45 million users saving a billion files every three days, so the demand for online storage is certainly there.

But not so fast, says Okung Nyo at The Verge. Nyo says that Google Drive is “an private internal service only for Googlers” and that it will never go public. If that’s the case, then the WSJ and many other sources will have egg on their face. Nyo goes on to say that Google services such as Gmail email, Google Music, and Google Docs are already on a cloud – and that to offer a freestanding cloud would “effectively be condemning the very future that it striving towards. Should users upload videos to YouTube and set the view mode to Private, or Google Drive? Documents to Docs or Drive? Photos to Google+ or Google Drive? And so on.”

Nyo does add one caveat, it may come… but if it does, “it will probably just be a redesigned Dashboard, i.e. a central location in which to manage all stored Google data (Docs documents, uploaded YouTube videos, Google+ photos, etc.).”

Time will tell.

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Faroh Sauder has spent more than 30 years working as a journalist and educator. He has written on politics, international affairs, civil rights, and consumer education. Now mostly retired, Faroh continues to stay current on tech and consumer issues and reports on his interests here at News For Shoppers.