While there is certainly no shortage of cloud storage options available to mobile users, one large company has been largely absent. To some extent, Google already offers a cloud storage option for mobile users via its popular Google Docs platform; Docs users can upload documents, spreadsheets, presentations, and certain other files to Google Docs, and access those files from the Google Docs application on any PC, Mac, or mobile platform which supports Google Docs. Uploading files to Google Docs is only limited by the paltry 1 GB of storage Google provides, which can fill up very quickly.
Similarly, Google Music allows users of the service to upload their music files to Google’s servers to stream to connected devices, but this too is limited to 20,000 songs. While Google’s cloud strategy to date has largely been piecemeal among its various services, services such as Dropbox, Zumodrive, and Box provide a single cloud storage solution paired with Android applications that let you access files as well as built-in media players for any multimedia files.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Google is just about ready to launch a full-featured cloud storage solution of its own. Google Drive will be a combination of at least some of the services currently offered by Google, and will allow users to upload photos, documents, and videos to the cloud for easy access to on their web-connected devices. Missing from WSJ’s report is any mention of Google Music, which likely suggests this service will continue to operate as a standalone service at least for the time being.
We don’t yet know details about the storage limits and pricing tiers Google will offer with Google Drive, though we largely expect Google will continue its strategy of offering a certain amount of storage for free, with pricing tiers available for those who wish to store more content on Google’s servers. Google will likely try to offer similar storage options as its competitors, but for a smaller monthly fee.
We should be learning much more about Google Drive in coming weeks. Stay tuned.