Google Drive! The Unboxing: Are You Prepared to Give Google Everything?

I’ve been accepted. I’m about to be a Google Drive user. And I’ll share what it’s like, thus far.

Trick from Lifehacker: Save all Gmail attachments to your Google Drive.

Welcome screen for Google Drive

Cool. Let’s load up the Mac App and see what we get. (I’m an avid Dropbox user, so I’m curious to see how GD compares.

Downloads in SECONDS < google knows what they're good at

“Should complete in SECONDS” < yes, google knows what they’re good at. And only Amazon Cloud Services is even coming close to their performance measures. Go Google Go!

And did we mention it’s FREE? Well, sort of free. If you don’t mind SHARING your intimate details with Google. Oh, don’t worry, you all ready are.

Let’s click on that privacy link anyway, just to review.


Last modified: March 1, 2012 (view archived versions)

There are many different ways you can use our services – to search for and share information, to communicate with other people or to create new content. When you share information with us, for example by creating a Google Account, we can make those services even better – to show you more relevant search results and ads, to help you connect with people or to make sharing with others quicker and easier. As you use our services, we want you to be clear how we’re using information and the ways in which you can protect your privacy.

We use the information we collect from all of our services to provide, maintain, protect and improve them, to develop new ones, and to protect Google and our users. We also use this information to offer you tailored content – like giving you more relevant search results and ads.

We may use the name you provide for your Google Profile across all of the services we offer that require a Google Account. In addition, we may replace past names associated with your Google Account so that you are represented consistently across all our services. If other users already have your email, or other information that identifies you, we may show them your publicly visible Google Profile information, such as your name and photo.

When you contact Google, we may keep a record of your communication to help solve any issues you might be facing. We may use your email address to inform you about our services, such as letting you know about upcoming changes or improvements.

We use information collected from cookies and other technologies, like pixel tags, to improve your user experience and the overall quality of our services. For example, by saving your language preferences, we’ll be able to have our services appear in the language you prefer. When showing you tailored ads, we will not associate a cookie or anonymous identifier with sensitive categories, such as those based on race, religion, sexual orientation or health.

We may combine personal information from one service with information, including personal information, from other Google services – for example to make it easier to share things with people you know. We will not combine DoubleClick cookie information with personally identifiable information unless we have your opt-in consent.


Transparency and choice

People have different privacy concerns. Our goal is to be clear about what information we collect, so that you can make meaningful choices about how it is used. For example, you can:

  • Review and control certain types of information tied to your Google Account by using Google Dashboard.
  • View and edit your ads preferences, such as which categories might interest you, using the Ads Preferences Manager. You can also opt out of certain Google advertising services here.
  • Use our editor to see and adjust how your Google Profile appears to particular individuals.
  • Control who you share information with.
  • Take information out of many of our services.


I’m going to click on that VIEW and EDIT button a bit later. But let’s get on with DRIVE!

Does Google Use Amazon Cloud Services?

As simple as that. (I wonder: Does Google Use Amazon Cloud Services?)

Okay, and let’s fire the sucker up.

Google Drive app and Google Chrome app

And there’s the sign-in:

Getting Started with Google Drive

2nd Getting Started screen of Google Drive setup

Okay, hold on just a second, that START SYNC button is a bit menacing. Um… I’m not sure I’m ready to SYNC anything yet. Okay, let’s go check out “Advanced Setup”

Google Drive Advanced Setup Screen

Okay, I’m turning off the Start at start up. And I’m setting a “Only sync some folders” check box. That’s better. Okay Google Drive, do your stuff.

Cool. All my Google docs are now available offline

AMAZING. All of my Google Docs, from all over the place, are now hard copied in my Google Drive folder. And the startup said I can now edit them when I’m offline! If this is so, G is taking one more step towards poking a hole in Microsofts WORD/EXCEL doc lock. WOOT!

Okay, this is stunning. Here’s the web interface for my cloud-based drive. Here is MY DRIVE page.

Launching Google Drives Web Interface

Hmm… Looks just like the new Gmail interface AND Google+. (Well done, Google.)

Here is the SHARED WITH ME page

Making Google Docs a viable alternative - Google Drive

Okay, so what this does is resurrect old docs that I no longer knew about. Very cool. But the HUGE ah-ha is this: Google Drive is going to solve the last barrier to using Google Docs.

If I can use my Google Docs while not being connected to the net, well, that might be the tipping point. I mean, who loves WORD?

Well, the unboxing of my new Google Drive is complete. I’ll put some finishing touches down when I have some time with the drive. Let’s see how it stacks up against Dropbox. And what the implications are for the future of MSFT OFFICE.

@jmacofearth (also seen on Google+: jmacofearth)

Other posts to help you kick ass in social media:

Most people don’t really enjoy being mean; they do it because they can’t help it. (from Graham’s Hierarchy of Disagreement)

Leave a Reply

Close Menu