I've been an avid user of Dropbox for years. Yesterday, I transitioned most of my critical, “gotta have” data to Google Drive. Why? Is Dropbox no longer in my tool set?
Let me tell you a story. It all started when Dropbox appointed former Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, to their board. In case you don't remember, Rice was in the Bush administration, where they took torture and covert surveillance to new levels. Now, I know businesses have a right to hire or appoint whomever they want, and I also know that Google hasn't been a privacy champion, either.
I also agree with the author of the article I linked to above: Rice may have been chosen because she has unique experience with such things. I'm not bashing her here. I'll leave that for Facebook…
But just like security firms hiring hackers who've broken the law in the past, Dropbox may be doing something similar. No matter.
Her appointment got me to thinking. And looking for alternatives. I looked at a number of competing services and couldn't find anything better than Dropbox. But Google Drive is right on par and it's much cheaper.
So, in a way, yes, I chose price over country. There, I said it.
The good stuff about Google Drive?
- Price – It's $1.99 for 100GB. Dropbox is $9.99 for the same quantity of storage.
- Speed – This is a double-edged sword. Both services beat the other hands-down in certain aspects. Google's syncs are notoriously slow and resource-intensive; however, the real deal-breaker for me has been how slow Dropbox is at sorting files (say, by date descending). It's been frustrating me for months and when I tried the same operation on Google Drive, it acted just like any other window (i.e., it was super speedy). Dropbox file syncs are a lot faster than Drive, but they have gotten noticeably slower the past year or so.
- Drive has some nice integrated features with Google Plus and Google's other services, like Documents and Hangouts. The Google Plus platform is becoming increasingly my go-to platform for nearly everything I do online.
- I used to really like the “upload to Dropbox” feature on its mobile app. But now, since I use an Android phone anyway, all photos are automatically uploaded to Google+ photos anyway.
So, I've switched most of the data I frequently need.
BUT, I will still use Dropbox for those files I need synchronized pronto – I have a copy/paste utility that I use on several computers and I put my “clips” on Dropbox. With Drive, it never worked properly because of the slow file syncing issue. And another reason I will continue to use Dropbox, if only sparingly:
It's more widely used, especially by my customers. So when we need to share files, it's plain easier to deal with Dropbox than Drive.
I'm not bashing Dropbox here; I'm just telling you why I chose Drive over Dropbox for my important stuff.