Google Drive is the cloud storage offering from the technology giant. It allows users to upload their files to the service and access them on any device from anywhere. For example, you could be working on a document at work, upload it to Google Drive and then continue editing it on the bus on your phone. It’s quick, easy and very convenient, especially if you are tied into the Google ecosystem. Cloud storage is becoming increasingly popular and if you're looking for a service then Google Drive is going to be a good bet.
Google recently announced that they are unifying Gmail and Drive’s storage capacities. Previously, Gmail had 10 GB of free storage while Drive had 5 GB. Frankly, it always seemed a bit back to front. However, now those limits have been merged to offer 15 GB across both services.
Google are doing this because they do not view separate storage as making much sense anymore. It is good that they are taking this viewpoint. For example, you may use Drive a lot and Gmail hardly at all, meaning that you had a whole load of space just not being used. Now all of that is irrelevant and you can take charge of the 15 GB how you want. Commit all of that space to Drive if you like, or designate a certain amount just for the mail.
Of course, users are still able to upgrade their Drive storage if the free 15 GB just doesn’t cut it. There are a wide range of storage plans available to suit your needs. However, Google has ditched one of its storage tiers. Previously it offered 25 GB for $2.49 a month and this was the cheapest upgrade available. The minimum upgrade is now 100 GB for $4.99 a month. Still, that remains half the price of what competitor Dropbox offers for the same amount. Google have stated that those currently paying $2.49 a month can keep this plan until they cancel or change it. Other storage upgrade amounts are 200 GB for $9.99 a month, 2 TB for $99.99 a month or you can go all the way up to 16 TB for $799.99 a month.
Additionally, this means that users are no longer limited to a 25 GB upgrade for Gmail. Any additional storage purchases are simultaneous across all systems.
You can see how much storage you are using across all the Google services if you go to your Drive storage page. Here you will be able to view a pie chart which you can hover over to get more detail.
This change makes Drive one of the best storage options for those just utilising the free space. Dropbox only offers 2 GB, while other competitors like Box and SugarSync give 5 GB. Google’s competitor Microsoft comes closest, offering up 7 GB of free storage on their SkyDrive platform.
This move from Google is very clearly a competitive one to advance their place in the cloud storage marketplace. Google is in a powerful position due to the popularity of their ecosystem and unifying the storage space across it is sure to draw in some attention.
Drive Increases Free Storage to 15 GB
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