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Google launches cloud storage system ‘Drive’

Posted by Sam Golden on 24th April 2012

Internet giant Google announced the launch of a new consumer service today allowing users to store and access their documents from anywhere using cloud-based technology.

Despite a late arrival to the cloud hosting party, Google Drive has already had cloud-based storage rivals (such as Dropbox and Skydrive) ensuring their tech PR agencies are pushing the message that there are other, equally useful services available.

Smoke clouds & disk mirrors

Rumours of Google Drive have been floating around the interwebs since February when a Geekwire reader claimed Google Drive had been prematurely enabled on his account. Then another glimpse of the logo was caught during a Google Android developer Hangout last Friday.

Finally the release of Drive was confirmed when Google updated its support pages for Google Documents to include information on how users could send their documents to their Google Drive. Since then the blogosphere has been exploding with posts speculating about the benefits Google Drive.

In reality the benefits of Google Drive compared to other services include better compatibility with other popular Google services (such as Google documents) as well as 5GBs of free storage– 3GB more than Dropbox.

Another interesting advantage that I believe gives Google Drive the edge is its ability to search the text in images using OCR and image recognition technology.

Hey! You! Get off of my cloud.

According to the OPSWAT market share report, 10.41% of the worldwide Backup Client market is already held by Dropbox, a reasonably new company providing a cloud based storage service.

In an attempt to retain this market share and dispel the buzz around Google Drive, Dropbox’s technology pr agency, Allison+Partners, announced earlier that Dropbox users could now share their files with anyone regardless of whether their recipients have a Dropbox account. Monolithic computer company Microsoft also announced updates to their SkyDrive cloud storage service.

With Google already a prominent player in a number of other internet markets as well as the number one search engine on the web, it will be interesting to see how the following months pan out for other companies fighting for their space on the cloud and how they manage the PR message around the launch.

Sam Golden