Google Drive Review- Features, Cost Plans, File Sharing and becoming part of Google One
last updated: 06 Nov 2019
|It may not shine in the security and privacy department as it doesn’t offer zero-knowledge encryption. But Google Drive is excellent for potential users who are looking to collaborate online and offline, share, and work in the G Suite Files. Verdict|
Complete Google eco-system
Giant Tech Company
Organizing files in GDrive can be challenging
No zero-knowledge encryption
It’s one of the most popular cloud storage services globally.
Google Drive is known for its ease of use, and it is no exception when it comes to knowing for one of its best services for collaboration thanks to Google features such as third-party apps and Google Office Suite.
Google Drive is also known for its excellent sharing features and fast transfer speeds, which will be covered more below.
Now, when it comes to privacy and security, Google isn’t very strong in those areas, unlike pCloud, Sync.com, or Tresorit.
If you want to read reviews about pCloud, Sync.com or Tresorit, check them out below:
Is Google Drive, known as Google One?
Google has rebranded its Google Drive storage service to now known as Google One.
If you’re confused about the differences between these two, don’t be – Google didn’t rebrand all of its drive-related services.
There will still be Google Drive to store your files.
What is Google One?
Last year, 2018, Google revamped its cloud storage features that are now known as Google One.
All the space in Google Drive, Gmail, Google Photos, and all of Google apps can be accessed via Google One.
Similarly, Google will provide all users 15GB of free space upon signing up with them.
For other experienced users, when 15GB runs out, you will automatically be transferred to the One plan.
There’s no need to worry because most of the plans are pretty much the same. There’s not much difference in the cost plans.
Google only adjusted slightly in its pricing plans. They added $2.99 per 200GB plan and increased $9.99 from 1TB to 2TB.
|Google Drive Past||Google One Current|
|15GB: Free||15GB: Free|
|100GB: $1.99/mo||100GB: $1.99/mo|
|1TB: $9.99/mo||200GB: $2.99/mo|
|2TB: $19.99/mo||2TB: $9.99/mo|
|10TB: $99.99/mo||10GB: $9.99/mo|
|20TB: $199.99/mo||20GB: $199.99/mo|
|30TB: $299.99/mo||30GB: $299.99/mo|
Google One subscribers are also able to share their storage up to five family members by using their new family plan.
Each of them is allocated with their private storage; however, they will all be added toward the total storage space.
Google One offers custom subscription services, whereas Google Drive is a storage service that is part of Google One.
Features – 95%
For years, Google Drive has quietly shifted to one of the best cloud storage for many users.
There’s a reason for it!
Google Drive is known for its excellent collaboration feature.
It’s the only service that is known to be better than Dropbox or OneDrive.
If you want to know more about which cloud storage is better: Google Drive vs Dropbox vs OneDrive, check out our opinion on them.
One of the best things that made Google Drive’s collaboration so well is because of Google’s Office suite such as Docs, Sheets, and Slides that allow you to create, share and collaborate with others.
Google also provides a Chrome extension that allows you to view, edit, and convert between its files and Microsofts as these apps correspond to Microsoft’s Excel, Powerpoint, and Word.
You can sneak peek or open photos and play videos with Google Drive, as well.
However, you can’t edit your photos and videos.
Google also has other apps such as Photos, Calendar, Keep, and many more.
Google Photos makes it easy to organize your photos and upload as many as you want. It’s easy to use and allows you to share your photos and videos on social media.
It’s one of our favorite cloud storage for photos here.
Google Calendar, on the other hand, sync and record your calendar events across multiple devices.
All and all, Google Drive’s third-party app library, G Suite Marketplace contains thousands of software integrations that you can add, and most of them are free.
It’s very easy to share files and folders on Google Drive. All you have to do is generate a link to copy and paste or send it via email.
Depending on the permissions you set, other users who received it can view, edit, or comment.
There’s a disable option where you can prevent editors from changing access or adding new people.
However, the only downside of using Google Drive is that they don’t offer passwords or limit the number of downloads of files and folders.
This being said, you can restrict the users’ access by using permissions, “edit, comment or view.”
Google Drive may have a robust and smart approach to sharing, but its security doesn’t make it good enough for our most secure cloud storage picks.
Sync folder is what you install on the desktop and simultaneously upload and sync files that you drop onto the folder.
So, when you put a file into the folder, it gets automatically sent to the cloud, and you can see the file in your account across your devices.
It’s pretty similar to what Dropbox offers, as well.
Ease of Use
One of the perks of using Google Drive is the minimal and clear features that you can instantly recognize them by using either web, mobile, or desktop app.
The menu allows you to guide your Drive and create new folders and files. You can also search your files and folder using the top search bar.
It presents a full-text search, which means you can search through the content of your files. It comes pretty handily if you can’t remember your file name.
The immediate access area below the search bar allows you to open your recent files swiftly.
Below that, it can either show your files and folder in a list or grid view – entirely up to your choice.
It’s effortless to use it because all you have to do is right-click to modify your files or drag and drop. You can also drag and drop files and folders to upload into the Drive.
As previously mentioned, the desktop app offers an automatic sync folder option so you won’t face any issues because it’s so simple to navigate and straightforward.
The desktop app is available for macOS and Windows.
There’s a mobile app as well, and it permits you to access your files offline and online. It’s currently available for Android and iOS phones.
Security & Privacy – 88%
Google has to undergo several third-party audits regularly for security and privacy reasons.
You can view more at this link: https://gsuite.google.com/learn-more/security/security-whitepaper/page-5.html
Differ from OneDrive, data is encrypted using AES 128-bit at-rest. It’s uncrackable as for now.
When your files are transferring, they are protected using TLS protocol + AES 256 bit encryption.
However, Google Drive doesn’t implement zero-knowledge encryption which is a slight hiccup for those who want a secure privacy method for their data.
But, Google Drive provides 2FA so you can protect your credentials and passwords.
If you want to know more about which cloud storage services provide zero-knowledge encryption, consider reading our article.
Know Your Rights – Read the fine prints
In this regard, Google doesn’t share your name or email address and any other information that can personally identify you, unless you permit these advertisers.
But truth be told, some people don’t mind this at all, but others see this as privacy intrusion and might start looking at more secure cloud service alternatives.
Now, this depends on you – if you want to stick with Google Drive, go ahead!
You can protect your privacy by using some tools such as Boxcrypter to encrypt your files.
Next, Google complies with the General Data Protection Regulation that applied to the EU citizens’ data and transferred-data outside of the EU.
To sum up, Google Drive doesn’t offer private encryption or implement strict security measurements.
For years, Google Drive’s plans were quite expensive, but they became cheaper, which is a unique advantage to those who are looking for simple cloud storage service.
But what Google Drive doesn’t offer in quality, it provides a significant amount of quantity.
Google Drive, or it’s called now, Google One offers a free plan of 15GB.
Google Drive also offers plenty of flexibility with its 6 cost plans.
- Plan 1
- Plan 2
- Plan 3
- Plan 4
- Plan 5
- Plan 6
Conclusion: Is Google Drive really worth it?
Yes, it is.
It may not shine in the security and privacy department as it doesn’t offer zero-knowledge encryption.
But Google Drive is excellent for potential users who are looking to collaborate online and offline, share, and work in the G Suite Files.
The prices are very reasonable, and the new revamped of Google Drive, and One provides many exciting features.
Google Drive and One is the same time, but they offer a few differences in their features.
For example, Google Drive is a storage service that is part of Google One subscription plans, which also offers other applications such as Calendar, G Suite, and tons of other applications.
They are all sync with Google Drive for collaboration purposes.
With that being said and covered in this google drive review, is this enough for you to try it out, or will you pick an alternative that provides better privacy and security?[Off record] – If you aren’t paying, you most probably paying with your privacy.
If you are looking for massive saving over the long term that do not skim on security and privacy matters, do not miss out on pCloud Lifetime. Paid once and you’ll get lifetime cloud storage from an established cloud storage provider without the hassle of monthly or yearly recurring payment. Check out pCloud Lifetime here.