GDrive Actually Google Docs

Published on January 12, 2010
by John Paczkowski

imagesGoogle is adding some storage embellishments to its Docs service, essentially transforming the Web-based productivity suite into something akin to its long-rumored cloud storage service, GDrive, though the company disputes this comparison.

“This is not the ‘GDrive,'” a Google (GOOG) spokesperson explained. “We’ve been continuing to expand on the types of files that can be uploaded to Docs. We started with documents, spreadsheets, and presentations. Later we enabled upload, view and share of PDFs. This launch builds on internal work that we’ve been doing for some time.”

And indeed it does. Until yesterday, Google Docs was limited to office-type documents. Today, those limits are gone and you can upload any file you like as long as it’s not over 250 megabytes. The service will provide up to one gigabyte of free storage, with additional space costing 25 cents per gigabyte per year.

How this is different from the following description of GDrive culled from a 2006 Google presentation for analysts escapes me.

With infinite storage, we can house all user files, including: emails, web history, pictures, bookmarks, etc and make it accessible from anywhere (any device, any platform, etc). We already have efforts in this direction in terms of GDrive, GDS, Lighthouse, but all of them face bandwidth and storage constraints today. For example: Firefox team is working on server side stored state but they want to store only URLs rather than complete web pages for storage reasons. This theme will help us make the client less important (thin client, thick server model) which suits our strength vis-a-vis Microsoft and is also of great value.

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