Feeds

Google unveils GDrive that's 'not the GDrive'

Storage for any file on Google Docs

The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

Google says it's not the fabled GDrive. But the company will soon roll out an update to Google Docs - its web-based file editor - that lets users upload and store files of any type.

In a Tuesday morning blog post, Google Docs project manager Vijay Bangaru said the update would appear on existing accounts "over the next few weeks." Naturally, the company touted the addition as an alternative to transporting files via email or USB drive.

"You’ll be able to backup large graphics files, RAW photos, ZIP archives and much more to the cloud," Bangaru's post reads. "More importantly, instead of carrying a USB drive, you can now use Google Docs as a more convenient option for accessing your files on different computers."

This does not mean that Google Docs will read any file. Editing and viewing is still limited to popular document, spreadsheet, and presentation file types, including .docx, .xlsx, .doc, .odt, xls, .ods, .ppt, .csv, .html, .txt, and .rtf. And there's a file-size limit: 250MB.

In March 2006, a Google PowerPoint presentation intended for industry analysts famously exposed a company plan to store "100% of User Data."

"With infinite storage, we can house all user files, including: emails, web history, pictures, bookmarks, etc and make it accessible from anywhere (any device, any platform, etc)," the presentation read, before pointing out that this sort of thing was already part of company projects known as GDrive, GDS, and Lighthouse.

Ever since then, rumors have swirled that the GDrive was on the horizon. In November 2007, the Wall Street Journal reported that Google was preparing an online storage service capable of housing all the files you now store on your own hard drive, saying it could be ready "a few months from now." And in January 2009, new evidence indicated that this sort of storage service would be rolled into Google Docs.

That's exactly what has happened. But speaking with Information Week, Bangaru says Google Docs' imminent update "is not the GDrive." Yes, just like the Nexus One is not the Googlephone.

No doubt, Google would like to distance itself from talk of storing "100% of User Data." But this Google Docs update jibes with a GDrive reference that turned up last January in a file used by Google's free software suite, Google Pack.

Naturally, users are under no obligation to use the service. They can upload as much or as little data as they like. But in the grand scheme of things, this does give Google access to more user data - something it's constantly striving for. Data is not only a means of making decisions at Google, it's a way of juicing its search results and targeting ads.

But that's not the party line. With its blog post, Google also said that its Google Docs update will facilitate collaboration, with users able to upload files of any type to its "shared folders," introduced in October last year. Meanwhile, business users paying $50 per year for Google Apps Premier Edition can do batch uploads via the Google Documents List Data API. And as discussed Tuesday morning on the Google Enterprise blog, various third-party developers are offering tools that do automatic file migration and syncing with Premier Edition.

All Google Docs users received 1GB of storage for free. Consumers can purchase additional space for $0.25 per GB per year, while Google Apps Premier Edition users can must pay $3.50 per GB per year (or €3.00 per GB per year in the EU). Premier Edition includes support and covers not only Google Docs, but Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Sites, and more. ®

Using blade systems to cut costs and sharpen efficiencies

More from The Register

next story
Report: American tech firms charge Britons a thumping nationality tax
Without representation, too. Time for a Boston (Lincs) Macbook Party?
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
Child diagnosed as allergic to iPad
Apple's fondleslab is the tablet dermatitis sufferers won't want to take
Microsoft takes on Chromebook with low-cost Windows laptops
Redmond's chief salesman: We're taking 'hard' decisions
For Lenovo US, 8-inch Windows tablets are DEAD – long live 8-inch Windows tablets
Reports it's killing off smaller slabs are greatly exaggerated
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
prev story

Whitepapers

Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.