[Originally published in The Coloradoan on 5/25/12] For a company that most techie people associate with being at the forefront of digital trends, it has been a huge surprise to many that Google has never offered a mass storage solution as one of its services. While it has had the best business apps and marketplace to customize your online experience for some time, Google always has been missing a “cloud” storage solution. Until now. As of late April of this year, Google is offering “Drive” as its answer for mass storage issues. According to Google’s website, “Google Drive is a storage platform that allows users to access their data from any device or application. Users rely on Drive to store all of their data, while third-party applications rely on Drive to enable rich and contextual features for this data.” Drive is an immediate rival to other popular mass storage solutions such as DropBox. It allows you to sync your files on any device, and expand the amount of storage to fit your needs. While Google Docs has been a blessing for many collaboration scenarios, Google Drive is taking it one step further. Drive includes all of the features of Google Docs, such as online versions of your popular application formats. But, it is much more. Drive allows for mass storage of any type of file, no matter what. There are hundreds of file types out there, and now you can put them all in one place to store. Drive comes with free software to install on your PC or Mac, which adds a folder into your Documents and allows you to work with your files as you always have. When a change is made on one device, the change immediately is updated on any other device or accessible via your Internet browser. Drive also differs from its competitors because it offers more space, 5 gigabytes, for free. I recently installed Google Drive at my business and moved our files from DropBox. The transition was seamless, and the sync to the new folder took a reasonably short amount of time. I opted to upgrade my space to the next level at a very modest annual price. My co-workers and I now have one central location to store all our files, share easily, collaborate using Google tools and integrate our work directly into the Google Apps we already use daily. At the end of the day, Drive is long overdue from the tech giants at Google. It is a perfect addition for anyone looking to move your files to a cloud storage solution. Learn more at drive.google.com. Stu Crair is the owner and lead trainer at The Digital Workshop Center, providing digital arts and computer training instruction in Fort Collins. Call him at (970) 980-8091 or send email to stu@...read more
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