Trouble is afoot in Mountain View: fact. According to Brad McCarty, a journalist at The Next Web, he has struck gold after allegedly being sent a draft release from a partner of Google’s upcoming Google Drive service. The details? Google will offer 5GB of storage and it will reportedly launch next Tuesday. All we know, is that Google is furious about this leak.
So the rumours are true, the sleeping giant wakes?
As early as five years ago Google contemplated launching a cloud-storage service. But these particular rumours have certainly been brewing for a long time. Google spokespeople have declined to comment, but within the last couple of days it seemsthe rumours are picking up steam. Google has made one single statement on the leak to msnbc.com on Monday: “We do not comment on rumour or speculation”. At time of writing, Google has failed to address anything on its official blog which is very surprising. The blog seems to be its favourite way of releasing news like major algorithm updates!
OK, so what’s the hype about?
On February 9 of this year, the Wall Street Journal had reported that “Google [was] near the launch of [a] cloud storage service”. This article detailed what Google was planning and is worth a read.
Google Drive is basically the giant’s response to the growth of internet-connected mobile devices and ‘cloud computing’. Cloud computing is the technology to store files online so they can be retrieved from multiple devices. This would include photos, documents and videos; Google Drive users could easily share files with others.
Can Google catch up to their competitors?
In 2011, $830 million was spent on such storage devices; Google wants a piece of this pie for sure. Google Drive is expected to be added to its suite of software sold to businesses called Google Apps, making it competitive to Box.net, a company that sells cloud storage to businesses.
Google Drive is rumoured to be offering its customers 5GB of free storage. If the offer of 5GB free is true, then this would match what their chief competitors Apple and Amazon offer for free with their cloud-based storage services: iCloud and Cloud Drive.
Dropbox is the buzz word at Mountain View
Despite competition from similar giants and technology mainstays, Google considers new kid on the block Dropbox as one of their hottest competitors. Founded in 2007 by two Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduates, by October 2011 Dropbox had 45 million members who saved one billion files every few days. Such is the transformation of this whippersnapper into a juggernaut, Dropbox CEO Drew Houston reportedly turned down a nine-figure buyout from Apple.
Dropbox gives its customers 2GB of free storage. For an extra $10 or $20 a month, Dropbox customers can store up to 50GB or 100GB, plus the option to buy more.
Google reportedly aims to match these offers for a smaller fee, taking advantage of its already massive cloud infrastructure which stores and powers all of its services. Dropbox, on the other hand, uses Amazon’s Web Services like Netflix and Zynga does; Amazon Web Services is a division that maintains a network of computers that stores data online.
What do you think of the Google Drive rumours? Would you be tempted to ‘go Google’?