Tag Archives: Google Drive

OneDrive Storage Goes Unlimited For Office 365 Subscribers

Remember when OneDrive bumped up their free storage tier and made the storage included with Office 365 1TB from the 25GB that it used to be? Well, that was only a few months ago. Now, as they announced on the OneDrive blog on October 27, Microsoft is making the OneDrive storage unlimited for Office 365 Home, Personal and University subscribers.

The upgrade to unlimited storage rolls out today and there is a priority list for those who would like to see it early. I was one of those, and I got an email later in the day that while the upgrade to unlimited is in progress, the storage in my Office 365 Home account is bumped to 10TB, ten times the current allocation of 1TB.

So now, a customer can potentially get the full desktop Office suite for a PC/Mac, unlock editing features for tablet (iPad), get 60 minutes of Skype world calling to over 60 countries, use Office Online and Office Mobile on smartphones and unlimited storage for only $6.99 per month.

The above deal becomes even sweeter when there is a need for more than one user to be on the subscription. In such a case, a customer can get Office 365 Home which provides the same features for 5 users for $8.33 per month.

This is another move in the trend for cloud storage to become virtually free, tied closely to other services that companies like Microsoft, Google and to some extent, Apple provide. Here’s what Microsoft’s blog post said:

While unlimited storage is another important milestone for OneDrive we believe the true value of cloud storage is only realized when it is tightly integrated with the tools people use to communicate, create, and collaborate, both personally and professionally. That is why unlimited storage is just one small part of our broader promise to deliver a single experience across work and life that helps people store, sync, share, and collaborate on all the files that are important to them, all while meeting the security and compliance needs of even the most stringent organizations.

While Microsoft and Google have been really aggressive with their pricing, Apple has been a little reserved in how aggressive they get with the storage pricing. However, the biggest impact of such pricing moves are the likes of Box and Dropbox. For these companies, storage is a key factor but for platform makers like Microsoft, Google and Apple, adding storage inexpensively is not a big deal. How will Box and Dropbox combat this move? Your guess is as good as mine.

OneDrive Increases Free Storage and Office 365 Gets 1TB Free

On June 23, Microsoft announced several updates related to its OneDrive consumer-oriented online storage service including bumping up the free storage tier, reducing costs for purchasing storage dramatically, and adding 1TB to Office 365’s non-business plans.

OneDrive 1TB with Office
OneDrive 1TB with Office

Free Storage

While OneDrive (then called SkyDrive) offered 25GB free long time ago, Microsoft changed the free tierto be a then reasonable 7GB around the time of Windows 8 launch. The reasoning then was 7GB was higher than the competition at the time. Of course, as cost of storage has gone down, and as cloud services become more essential for ecosystems, Google and even Apple, have announced very inexpensive plans for their respective online storage services. Now, Microsoft matches some of the recent competitive updates by making the free tier to be 15GB.

Office 365 Personal, Home and University plans join the 1TB party

Microsoft had already announced that Office 365’s business editions would be getting 1TB of included storage (although that would be under OneDrive for Business, which is not the same product as OneDrive). With this announcement, Office 365’s non-business editions, which is Personal, Home and University, also get 1TB of included storage.

This makes Office 365 a pretty fantastic deal if you have the need for desktop Office, or if you want to be able to edit Office documents on the iPad. Not only does Office 365 now come with 1TB of storage, it always included 60 minutes of free Skype worldwide calling and of course desktop version of the Office suite, as well as edit rights for iPad version of the Office apps. If you have more than one person who needs Office, then Office 365 Home is a killer deal @ $99 per year for 5 users.

Office 365 Consumer Plans
Office 365 Consumer Plans

Reduced prices for additional storage options

Of course, as storage costs have gone down, each of the online storage providers have kept cutting their prices. OneDrive will no longer have the 50GB option since the $100GB option is now at $1.99 per month, down from $7.49 per month. An additional 200GB will be $3.99 per month, down from $11.49 per month.

These are great updates to an already useful storage service. As a reminder, OneDrive has a presence on all platforms, making it a truly universal online storage service: Windows 7, Windows 8.x, Windows Phone, iPhone, iPad, Android, Mac OS. The price changes were not completely unexpected because it is much easier for a larger company with scale, to keep lowering costs to meet the competition’s prices. I wonder what this means to the likes of Dropbox and Box, especially the former, since it has long been the darling of consumers for being so easy to use, sync and share. With OneDrive (and Google Drive and soon, iCloud) being so front-and-center in those various ecosystems, it will be interesting to see how many consumers will decide to switch away from the smaller companies. We shall see.

Edit: An earlier version of this article stated that OneDrive is perhaps the only service with apps across all platforms. Dropbox and Box also have apps across all platforms. Author meant to say, only one among the big ecosystem providers, but the sentence has been modified to refer to OneDrive by itself.

(Images courtesy OneDrive blog and Office Blogs)

OneDrive for Business Now Offers 1TB per User

OneDrive For Business
OneDrive For Business

On April 28, Microsoft announced some updates to OneDrive for Business, the service formerly known as SkyDrive Pro. According to the blog post on Office Blogs:

 

First, we will be increasing OneDrive for Business storage from 25GB to 1TB per user.

Second, all Office 365 ProPlus customers will get 1TB of OneDrive for Business storage per user as part of their Office 365 ProPlus subscription.

Third, we’ll help organizations migrate data from their existing solutions to OneDrive for Business

The first update is huge. Not too long ago, SkyDrive Pro was providing only 7GB per user. When Microsoft announced the standalone OneDrive for Business offering, they also bumped up the default storage to 25GB per user. Now perhaps based on pressure from competitors like Google, they have made the default to 1TB. As always when there is competition, we as customers ultimately win.

Office 365 ProPlus is a service that provides always-up-to-date Office software to customers on a subscription basis. Until today’s announcement, it was purely an Office subscription. Now, it also comes with a truckload of storage space and more importantly, a sync solution that ensures that files are always in sync across devices.

The third item was not detailed but I suspect Microsoft will have some utilities to help migrate data from Google Drive, Dropbox, Box and others to OneDrive for Business. We shall see.

The blog post goes on to describe the benefits OneDrive for Business offers in addition to pure storage amount and sync:

Native integration with Office documents: Enables people to discover content and collaborate with others in real time with efficient synchronization of changes and real-time co-authoring using Office Online.

Connected to what you need, when you need it: As cloud services like Office 365 get smarter and more personalized with Office Graph, OneDrive for Business becomes part of a connected productivity solution where content is discoverable, sharable and personalized for individual users, helping to increase personal and organizational responsiveness.

A trusted service: OneDrive for Business provides enterprise content management, compliance and admin controls, financially backed by the industry-leading Office 365 Service Level Agreement. We’ve made investments in manageability, security, auditing and information protection including rights management, data loss prevention, auditing, eDiscovery, legal holds, etc. and more that can work for OneDrive for business but also across SharePoint and Exchange.

Deep investment in certifications and infrastructure: We’ve invested heavily already in areas that are important for doing business in major vertical industries and geographies, such as FISMA, the EU Model Clauses, CJIS and more, many of which are detailed on our Trust Center.  Microsoft has industry-leading, cloud reliability and security and has made a massive investment in physical datacenters around the world, enabling us to deliver high availability and robust disaster recovery capabilities.

Scale through partners: Our 400,000 partners around the world can help customers get up and running quickly with OneDrive for Business as a standalone solution or with Office 365.

As you can see, OneDrive for Business is not a “dumb storage” service but it is in fact the center of a collaborative solution that is protected by certifications and service level agreements. Along with the huge partner network, which enables building innovative solutions on top of the storage layer, OneDrive for Business is now a serious contender for businesses of any size to move their data into the cloud.

Gmail Adds Google Drive, Now Attach Larger Files

The internet has an intangible presence in everyone’s lives nowadays, and it has grown into a strong content production and consumption platform with a worldwide audience. Some of the world’s most popular businesses are driven through this medium, and overall, the Internet is the one thing that has made life so much better for everyone. However, the Internet has been around for a few decades now, but it is still requires some decision making when it comes to transferring files over the Internet. This XKCD sums it up pretty well.

file_transfer

Email services have limits on the size of files that can be transferred. Recently, Dropbox was able to fill the gap with its file storage and syncing service. Now, Gmail is making it easier to transfer large file to your peers, by integrating its email service with its cloud storage service— Google Drive. Gmail has allowed email attachments up to 25 MB until now, but with Google Drive, we can send files up to 10 GB in size through Gmail. This is 400 times of what was once allowed.

The Gmail Drive integration comes with a new feature, which also checks if the file being shared has the correct permissions. The Gmail blog announces the new feature, saying,

Whenever you send a file from Drive that isn’t shared with everyone, you’ll be prompted with the option to change the file’s sharing settings without leaving your email. It’ll even work with Drive links pasted directly into emails.

The feature is available for those with Gmail’s new compose interface, and will roll out for all users over the next few days.

Zomato And Google Drive For Android Get Major Updates

Zomato is one of the most popular restaurant listing guide services available in India, if not the most popular. The service has a listing of more than 42,000 restaurants across all the major cities in India and is among the most successful start ups from India. One key advantage Zomato has over its competitors is that it has a dedicated app for all the major mobile platforms – Android, iOS and WP7 platforms.

The Android version of the app is good enough to get the job done, but has a very ugly UI. Thankfully, Zomato has released a major update for the Android and iOS version of the apps with a completely revamped UI. The new UI of the app looks much more beautiful and makes navigation a breeze compared to before.

Zomato has also added the ability to the ability to sign up/in via Facebook or Google, allowing you to follow your friends, see their recommendations, reviews etc. The update is already live in the Play Store and can be downloaded for free. The iOS version of the app has also got a similar update with new UI and features.

In other app update related news, Google has just released a major update for the Google Drive app on Android and iOS. Below is the huge change-log of the Google Drive update for Android – :

1. Create folder, upload to folder and move to folder
2. Filter folder contents by file type
3. Option to auto-sync pinned content while on 3G
4. Richer Google Presentations viewing experience
5. Basic table support in Documents Editor
6. Create, reply and resolve comments in Documents Editor
7. View and change fonts in Documents Editor
8. Pinch to zoom in Documents Editor
9. Print files using Google Cloud Print
10. Option to resume interrupted uploads

 The iOS update also adds all the above features, along with the ability to edit documents and much more.

[Screenshots] Amazon Joins Consumer Cloud Race With Desktop Clients

In the past few weeks the consumer cloud industry has seen some exciting announcements. Microsoft updated SkyDrive with several useful features like:

  • ODF Support
  • Desktop clients
  • Remote file browsing from within the browser
  • Dropbox-like single folder sync and storage
  • Paid storage
  • Updated mobile apps

These updates were announced just days before Google introduced the much awaited Google Drive. Like SkyDrive, Google’s consumer cloud storage and sync service has:

  • Desktop clients
  • Multi-format support
  • Single folder sync and storage
  • Paid storage

The other big player in cloud storage and cloud products—Amazon—too launched desktop clients for it consumer cloud. Unveiled to little fanfare, Amazon introduced desktop clients for users to upload files to their Cloud Drive account on Amazon. The desktop clients just help you upload the files and there is no Finder or Explorer integration. The Windows and OS X clients are the same, after installation a cloud sits in the taskbar for you to drag files to upload. Some details about Amazon’s cloud drive:

  • Free 5GB
  • Paid expansion up to 1000Gb for $1000 a year
  • An ugly web interface
  • Integration with Amazon’s Cloud Player

Here’s are screenshots of the desktop app:

Tour of the Amazon Cloud Drive app:

Preferences available:

You can download the clients from Amazon’s site.

Save Gmail Attachments to Google Drive

Google introduced the much awaited yesterday giving users 5GB of free cloud storage. However, with that introduction it looks like has removed the option to save Gmail attachments in and only provides options to view the document and download it. This is definitely a pain since I could easily save documents to Google Docs without problems in the past.

Save Gmail Attachments to Google Drive

If you are like me and want that feature back, you can do that with a  . The "Gmail Attachments to Drive" extension allows you to quickly save Gmail attachments straight to Google Drive by clicking a link. This saves you a lot of trouble because you no longer have to open the file before saving it to Google Docs. Secondly, this extension allows you to store any type of files in Google Drive.

Also Read: Google Docs vs Dropbox vs SkyDrive

Once you install the you will see an additional link to save the file to Google Drive. Clicking on the link should open a new window and save the file to your Google Drive account. Currently the files are stored in the main folder of Google Drive. You can easily move it to custom folders by visiting your Google Drive account.

If you are a user, you can also save Gmail Attachments directly to your Dropbox account as well.

Increase SkyDrive Storage to 25GB Free for Limited Time

The war has just exploded with the introduction of Google Drive earlier today. With Google Drive, now all major mobile operating system providers have some form of proprietary cloud storage solution including SkyDrive for Windows Phone 7 and iCloud for iOS along with several others like , Box and SugarSync.

Also Read: Google Drive vs Dropbox vs SkyDrive | 5 Best Ways to Keep Documents Online

Both and provide users with 5GB storage space for free whereas SkyDrive provides users with 7GB free space out of the box. SkyDrive initially started out with 25GB free space, but it has now cut down the storage to 7GB. However, if you have been an old user of SkyDrive, you will still be able to claim 25GB of free space.

SkyDrive 25GB Space Promo

To reclaim your 25GB of free space in SkyDrive, you will have to login to your account in your browser. Once you do that, you will see a link on the top saying; SkyDrive’s free storage is changing – claim your free 25GB.

SkyDrive 25GB Free Space Upgrade

Clicking on the link will take you to the manage storage page where you will be given an option to upgrade your storage. Just click on the “Free upgrade” button to increase your storage to 25GB. This option will only be available for a limited time to users who have already used Windows Live SkyDrive in the past. New users will only receive 7GB of free space.

If you are unable to get 25GB in SkyDrive, there are still several other options available including free 50GB space from Box if you are an user and up-to 18GB storage in Dropbox from referrals and free space.

Download Google Drive for Android, Windows and Mac

It was no secret that Google was working on a competitor to and SkyDrive and the official announcement came today. will provide users with 5GB of free space to all users. This is in line with Microsoft’s recent announcement to provide 7GB of free space for SkyDrive.

Google Drive

Google Drive will tightly integrate with and allow users to create and store documents, spreadsheets, presentations, PDF files and more and collaborate with friends and family online.  Additionally, Google Drive will also provide users with apps for PC, Mac and .

Also Read: Google Drive vs Dropbox vs SkyDrive | Google Drive, Another Privacy Disaster

Google Drive will directly compete with the likes of Dropbox and SkyDrive on PCs and mobile devices. It will also be an answer to Microsoft’s SkyDrive on Windows Phone 7 and iOS devices which is not available for Android devices. Dropbox on the other end is available for all mobile devices and also supports Linux. However, their initial free space is only 2GB which might potentially go up now. Additionally, Dropbox also allows for 16GB additional space from referrals.

Also See: Get 50GB Free Space for Android from Box.net | 5 Best Ways to Keep Documents Online

Google Drive will also provide users with a search functionality which will also make use of OCR to search images and scanned documents thanks to their acquisition of reCaptcha. This is definitely a big plus for them.

You can download Google Drive for your computer or device by using the link below; an iOS app will be released soon:

*Please note that the Android app is a rebranding of the Google Docs app for Android.

Google Drive, Another Privacy Disaster

Google France accidentally shared all the details about Google Drive before the product’s official announcement. The product is integral to Google’s Android ecosystem like SkyDrive is to Windows and iCloud is to iOS/OSX and has a some useful features like wider file format support and better search.

Sundar Pichai’s blog post that detailed Google Drive talked about how Google will offer better search capabilities. Here’s what he has to say:

Search All. Search by keyword and filter by document type, owner, activity, etc.. Drive can even recognize the text content of a document scanned by technology OCR. For example, if you download the scanned image of an old newspaper clipping, you can search using one of the words quoted in the article. We have even begun to tap the image recognition: if you upload a picture of the Eiffel Tower in Drive, the next time you search the term [Eiffel Tower], the image will appear in the results

*Emphasis mine.

While the search feature sounds all kinds of exciting, Google scanning all the documents I upload seems a little scary. The company is notorious for using such information to target ads and I see no reason why they won’t go through my documents to know more about me. OCR or Optical Character Recognition will enable Google to store the contents of documents somewhere with them. I am not sure the ability to search for my document should come at the price of corporation knowing the contents of my documents.

This is not about proprietary information but simply about keeping them out of my business and only offering me services.