The online file storage and collaboration sphere just got another major player.
Google (GOOG) on Tuesday announced its long-rumored Google Drive, providing users with five gigabytes of free storage online as well as collaboration tools for items stored in it.
"Today, we’re introducing Google Drive—a place where you can create, share, collaborate, and keep all of your stuff... You can upload and access all of your files, including videos, photos, Google Docs, PDFs and beyond," Google wrote in a blog post.
Joining the ranks of Dropbox, Box, and Microsoft's (MSFT) Sky Drive, and Amazon's (AMZN) Cloud Drive, Google Drive not only lets users upload their files to be accessed anywhere, but also includes collaboration tools to let others edit documents with built-in Google Docs. Users can even comment on shared items.
Given Google's focus on search, it's not surprising the new product includes a powerful search tool that works by keyword, file type, and other metadata. Setting it apart from the competition, Google Drive includes OCR (Optical Character Recognition) technology that recognizes words in scanned documents.
Google Drive can be accessed over the Web, through desktop software for Mac and PC, or through its Android app. Google said it is working on an app for iOS devices like the iPhone. It's also integrated with Google's social network Google+ and soon Gmail users will be able to attach files from it directly to emails.
Users looking for more than just 5GB of space can upgrade to 25GB for $2.49 or 100GB for $4.99 a month. Still not enough? Google's also got a 1TB option for true data hawks that'll set you back $49.99 a month.