Google's new storage service

Google's new storage service

Summary: It is about frikkin' time!18 months ago the storage world was abuzz with the hints of Google's Gdrive, a rumored free(?

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TOPICS: Storage, Google
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It is about frikkin' time! 18 months ago the storage world was abuzz with the hints of Google's Gdrive, a rumored free(?) online storage service that was going to change everything. Microsoft was working feverishly on a counter-product "LiveDrive". Only it never happened.

Finally, Google has made its move! And what a let-down! For a mere $2-$3 per GB per year, you can add storage capacity to your Gmail account and/or your Picasa photo sharing account.

There's nothing wrong with the pricing. It is about the same as any other online service. It just isn't any better, nor are the services wrapped around it anything special. It is unworthy of the Google name.

Let the competition begin Carbonite and Mozy will give you unlimited backup storage space for anything for $50/year - and Mozy will give you 2 GB for free. SmugMug will give you unlimited photo storage - replicated 4 times no less - for $40/year plus well-designed photo albums. Amazon's S3 service runs about $2 per GB per year, depending on bandwidth. You can buy a 300 GB USB drive online for $100.

Carbonite, Mozy and SmugMug all get the fact that consumers don't really know how much data they might want to store, so they don't make them think about it. Google, on the other hand, charges $20/year for the first 6 GB on up to $500/year for 250 GB. Quick, how many gigabytes of mail and photos do you have?

So why would anyone buy Google's me-too storage service? I suppose if you are wedded to Gmail and Picasa it might make sense. Other than that I really can't think of a reason. Too bad.

The Storage Bits take I really admire much of what Google has done with search, infrastructure and Internet advertising. My major concern about the company has always been their mediocre - nah, it isn't even that good - make that horrible marketing.

They spend countless hours and CPU cycles analyzing web page layout, but new product roll-out is amateurish at best. Did anyone perform a SWOT analysis? Any competitive analysis? Any strategic analysis on how this service might fit into a larger vision of Google and its customer relationships? Is there a business plan?

The whole effort reads like a few engineers fiddling around until they got something inoffensive enough for a not-very-plugged-in committee to approve. It sure does nothing to strengthen the Google brand or bring superior value to customers. If they like having a $500 per share stock price maybe someone in Mountain View should start thinking about those things.

Comments welcome, of course. How would you use Google's new service, if you would?

Topics: Storage, Google

About

Robin Harris has been a computer buff for over 35 years and selling and marketing data storage for over 30 years in companies large and small.

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15 comments
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  • Google

    It appears that Google's marketing team is actually Sun's marketing team moonlighting at Google. The advantage to Google is that they pay less for the same level of ineffectivness.
    corfu
    • Hilarious and too true.

      The scary part is that nobody at Google seems to care.

      Maybe Google is too sexy for marketing. It must be something.

      At this rate the stock won't be worth much.

      Cheers,

      Robin
      R Harris
  • "In order to improve overall services..."

    That was the opening line Google sent to customers who PURCHASED video content from their video service informing the service was being discontinued and customers will no longer be able to view their purchased content. Substitute the word "storage" for video and kiss your files good-bye.
    MGP2
    • "In order to improve my lifestyle..."

      If I have been using that service that type of behavior might have been enough to make me quit using Google. This is the type of stuff that makes me backup my gmail account on occasion.
      netuzer
      • Inside the Googlebubble

        it is probably hard to believe that people could ever get over Google, but I think they
        could be 12 months away from a major turn in public sentiment.

        Good intentions are fine. Now deliver something new and useful.

        Robin
        R Harris
        • Never need to delete anything?

          It so reminds me of Googlemail's claims that you'll never need to delete anything now you have so much storage space - pity it's still limited!
          d.s.williams
  • Never happened?

    http://skydrive.live.com/

    Like everything now a days, it is beta and limited to 500MB.
    mdemuth
  • I don't think so!

    "It is unworthy of the Google name." -- beyond the search engine, anything is worthy of the Google name!
    Mr_Wizard
  • I wouldn't

    I have disk space sitting unused on my shared hosting sever. I have a CD writer in my laptop. The only thing I'm not too thrilled about is that I can't use rsync with the shared space. But CD's are cheap enough to serve as rotating backup targets.
    Jambalaya Breath
  • YOU NOW HAVE UNLIMITED STORAGE

    Did the news about Yahoo! pass you guys by?

    http://ymailuk.com/blog1/2007/03/28/yahoo-mail-goes-to-infinity-and-beyond/
    Yahoo! Mail goes to infinity and beyond
    As Yahoo! Mail approaches its 10-year anniversary, I?m the lucky one who gets to announce that we will begin offering everyone unlimited email storage starting in May 2007.
    d.s.williams
    • NOT Really????

      In other threads people has commented that Yahoo has created a so called "storage abuse policy" that translates into a simple ban for people going over 20Gb.
      I have not experienced such a thing and would like to ask few questions on it.
      Does this policy exist? If yes, who determines what is "abuse"? If the first answer is yes, then how can you claim it is unlimited?
      sashkashurik
  • Wrong offering - GS^2 to compete with Amazon's S3 is the way to go...

    From the ElephantDrive blog on WordPress...

    "As we have noted time and again, what would be great would be if Google would come out with a competitive offering to Amazon?s S3. They?d be leveraging what they really know well - how to build amazingly efficient and hugely scalable utilty systems, and would not have to do much to create enormous buzz in the development community. Moreover, instead of threatening to hurt the small companies in the storage space, they would actually be providing enormous value."
    LargeMammal
  • GDrive is too late, DriveHQ.com is much better!

    I have been a happy DriveHQ user for almost 2 years. Their service is great! All GDrive features are long available and better on DriveHQ.com. Visit www.drivehq.com and watch the demo.

    # Automatic Online Backup. DriveHQ Online Backup works great. It has a lot of high-end features, much better than GDrive, including versioning, scheduled backup, encrypted storage, compressed upload, incremental backup and resuming, etc.

    # Folder Sync. DriveHQ FileManager can sync multiple PCs, multiple user accounts.

    # VPN-less access. You can access your data from anywhere using a web browser, any FTP client, or DriveHQ Client software, or SMTP/POP3 email with Outlook!

    # Group Collaboration. DriveHQ Group Account service is a true enterprise class collaboration platform. You can easily share folders to different people with different access rights. DriveHQ Group Account owner / admin can create/manage/delete sub-accounts.

    # Disconnected access. On the plane? VPN broken? All your files are still accessible as DriveHQ FileManager can cache the data for offline access! DriveHQ even offers SMTP/POP3 emails for offline Outlook access with unlimited email storage!

    DriveHQ offers basic service for free. So why the wait? Sign up at: http://www.drivehq.com/?refID=2925384
    jerrylippman_ny
  • Fotki does this for 5 years at least

    Fotki provided unlimited photo storage for last 5 years as far as I know them. And does it for $30 a year.
    mrd000
  • RE: Google's new storage service

    Transferum ( http://www.transferum.com ) offers 1GB FREE FTP Space, as well.The FREE account comes with No Expiration Period and UNLIMITED Parallel Concurrent connections for uploading/downloading files, everything for a one time activation fee of $1.
    It also offers Individual FTP Storage plans and business ones.Storage space up to 1TB and good transfer speeds.
    jasonx76