Google has tripled free storage space, across Gmail, Google+ and Drive, bringing the total to 15GB. This is a serious move by Google as it places the company at the forefront of cloud based solutions with institutions working to tight financial constraints. Having turned to Google Drive as my main storage facility, I thought I would highlight some advantages of using the platform. (Please click on the links for further explanation.)
- Access files anytime on any device with an internet connection.
- Work offline with documents.
- Share files/documents with others and collaborate in real time.
- Share folders with students and receive and feedback on assignments.
- Allow read only access on documents and share with students as resource with no photocopying.
- Save a document in a variety of formats.
- Works with other Google Apps to provide platform for forms, surveys, projects.
- Save to GoogleDrive with two taps of an icon or clicks of a mouse.
- Search files in Drive for name or keyword.
(courtesy of Anson Alexander)
Google Drive provides a platform to organise and enhance workflow for teachers. The most obvious example is how quickly resources can be shared, annotated and collaborated upon. A shared folder with a student could contain assignments, screencasts and resources that could serve to form a digital portfolio and a reference point for teacher and parents. In my opinion, the fact that we can now share more storage space for free, places Google Drive firmly ahead of Dropbox. This is supported by the recent announcement that you can also save web resources at the click of a button, bringing Google Drive into line with the functionality of Dropbox.
As with other cloud based solutions, there are a number of disadvantages to using Google Drive. Not least the requirement to sign up students via a Gmail account and the testing question of the whole school solution. However, as we make our way with cloud based storage, I can recommend giving Google Drive a try. With 15GB for free what have you got to lose?