google drive 1 Google Drive arrives, 5GB of free storage included

Wave bye bye to Google Docs and say hello to Google Drive, as the much rumoured and leaked service has gone live, more or less at least. Google seems to be rolling out the service step by step and if you haven't gotten it yet do not fret as it should arrive shortly.

Wave bye bye to Google Docs and say hello to Google Drive, as the much rumoured and leaked service has gone live, more or less at least. Google seems to be rolling out the service step by step and if you haven't gotten it yet do not fret as it should arrive shortly.

The basics are actually not that different to Google Docs, as the UI is very similar and you can still create Google Docs files just as easily as before, they just turn up on your Google Drive now instead. However, some of the major advantages include the option to upload a wider range of files to Google Drive compared to Docs and the handy inclusion of a Dropbox like app for your desktop or notebook computer.

google drive 1 Google Drive arrives, 5GB of free storage included

The Google Drive app creates a folder on your computer and allows you to sync files that are dropped into it with the Google Drive service and likewise shared documents or other content on your Google drive is automagically downloaded to your PC. Google has also updated Google Docs for Android and it's now simply called Drive. The advantage here is that you can upload pretty much any content you can access on your handheld device to the Google Drive service.

google drive 3 Google Drive arrives, 5GB of free storage included

It's not all good news though, although Google is generously including 5GB of free storage or over twice that of what Dropbox gives you for free, Google has increased the cost of additional storage. Admittedly in the past, additional space had fairly limited usefulness unless you had a serious amount of email and the space was shared between various services such as Picasa and Gmail. For US$2.49 a month you get 25GB of storage for Google Drive, although this is shared with your Picasa account as well, but in addition to that, your Gmail account also gets upgraded to 25GB. US$4.99 a month gets you 100GB with the addition of 25GB for your Gmail account.

google drive 2 Google Drive arrives, 5GB of free storage included

Google's past price plans would've set you back US$0.42 a month for 20GB and US$1.67 a month for 80GB, but this was split between Gmail and Picasa. Those still one these older price plans will be able to continue using them at the same price point until they stop paying for the service. Google is also offering additional space ranging from 200GB to a massive 16TB ranging from US$9.99 to US$799.99 a month.

In related news, Google also upgrading Gmail's basic storage capacity from 7GB and counting, to 10GB. Picasa will remain limited to 1GB, but keep in mind that this only counts towards pictures larger than 2048×2048 pixels.

Source: Google