Entertainment Google Drive vs Dropbox: Which cloud solution is right for you?
Google Drive vs Dropbox: Which cloud solution is right for you?
Dropbox was one of the early players on the cloud scene, back when Google Drive was just a glint in the eyes of Sergey Brin and Larry Page. Founded in 2007, it had a sizable head-start on Google Drive, which wasn’t founded until 2012, but Google’s offering has caught up in terms of popularity. That doesn’t necessarily mean, however, that there is a clear winner when users are weighing up the Google Drive vs Dropbox debate (not to mention the other contenders for the title of best cloud storage).
There’s a reason why Dropbox has enjoyed such longevity in the highly competitive cloud computing space and why it continues to be a standout choice, whether users are looking for the best cloud document storage, the best business cloud storage, or even the best free cloud storage. However, Google Drive has considerable strengths too and the delivers close integration with the heft of the mighty Google ecosystem.
The cloud market is a fragmented one, presenting a multitude of different platforms for individuals to consider. Deciding between Google Drive and Dropbox is not an easy decision – and may ultimately depend on how wedded you are to Google’s suite of other tools. However, we aim to help you come to an informed choice.
The below guide outlines the pros and cons of both Google Drive and Dropbox, so you can determine which cloud storage solution is the right one for your needs. Our comparison assesses the features, performance, support, and pricing of both solutions, so you can make up your own mind when weighing up Google Drive vs Dropbox.
Google Drive vs Dropbox: Features
The good news is, for users of either Google Drive or Dropbox, both platforms offer all the basic features that individuals have come to expect from their cloud storage solution, including file transfers, backup, and file syncing across devices.
In addition, both platforms also offer more advanced features. Dropbox, for example, offers block-level syncing, which should speed up syncing and also a “smart sync” option, which lets users choose the files that are shared locally and those that are only accessible through the cloud. The lack of a block-sync feature in Google Drive is disappointing and while the solution has recently implemented something similar to Dropbox’s “smart sync,” it reportedly isn’t quite as user-friendly.
Businesses, or individuals storing sensitive documents, will be pleased to hear that both platforms allow users to recover files that have been wrongfully edited or deleted. Dropbox Business gives users 180 days to recover files, while Google Drive allows individuals to keep older versions of their files without a time limit. If indefinite file versioning is important to you, Google Drive has the edge.
Google Drive vs Dropbox: Performance
In terms of performance, comparisons between Google Drive and Dropbox are complicated somewhat by the different tiers available for each. Having said that, most users have commented on Dropbox’s superior performance – particularly when using the paid version. In terms of speed, Dropbox comes out on top in most comparisons – which, again, could be a dealbreaker for businesses that commonly upload large files.
The user interfaces offered by Dropbox and Google Drive are both intuitive and easy to use, with both platforms accessible from either a desktop application or the web browser of your choice. So, both platforms offer strong, fast performance that is easy for even non-technical individuals to get to grips with, but Dropbox does boast slightly better speeds.
Google Drive vs Dropbox: Support
As you might expect from two big names in cloud computing, all the usual support channels are provided – email, live chat, and telephone. As is often the case, live chat is usually the quickest route across both platforms. If you would prefer to receive support via email, Dropbox promises a response to each query in 24 hours (although users may well receive support faster than that).
Although there have been reports that Google Drive’s support system is not that easy to use, there is an extensive help center that contains a wide range of support, and an active community forum to provide extra assistance.
Google Drive vs Dropbox: Pricing
Both Dropbox and Google Drive have strong free offerings if individuals or businesses want to get to grips with the platforms before committing themselves financially. The free Dropbox plan does only offer a disappointing 2GB of storage, however, which is massively dwarfed by the 15GB provided by the free Google Drive plan.
Examining the paid business plans for each solution, Google Drive (via Google Workspace) charges on a per-user, per-month basis, with customers receiving 30GB for $6, 2TB for $12, and 5TB for $18. There’s not too much in it, but Dropbox’s business plans are slightly cheaper, offering 5TB of storage for $15 per user, per month, and unlimited storage for $25 per user.
Google Drive vs Dropbox: Our Verdict
Deciding between Google Drive and Dropbox is likely to come down to two crucial factors: how committed you are to Google’s other tools and how important speed is to you. If performance is everything, then it’s difficult to see past the extra speed offered by Dropbox.