Rumor: Google Drive cloud storage to launch in April

By Lee Kaelin on March 28, 2012, 10:30 AM

Google's cloud-based storage service, dubbed Google Drive or GDrive, could arrive as early as next month, according to "well placed sources familiar with company’s plans" talking to GigaOM.

These rumors have been a long time coming, with the Wall Street Journal first reporting it way back in 2006. Since then, speculation regarding the product's possible arrival has emerged on multiple occasions, but up until now nothing has come to fruition. Now rumors say that the new service is likely to arrive in the first week of April.

Accroding to the report, Google will offer just 1GB of storage for free and charge for those requiring more. If accurate, that seems like a rather strange decision considering Dropbox, which is arguably the leader of cloud-based storage, offers double that for their basic free plan. Even Apple’s iCloud and Box offer 5GB for free, and Microsoft's SkyDrive offers 25GB, so Google would be far from competing with the established products in terms of free storage capacity.

Despite this, it would offer a compelling solution for those currently using multiple services for email, electronic documents and cloud-based storage. The ability to control all aspects within a single account without the need for multiple accounts with different providers certainly makes it an attractive option.

Google Drive will also come with a local client, as well as a web interface, and is said to be similar in looks to the current Google Docs service. There is no word yet on what hardware platforms will be supported from launch, but it’s likely at least Android’s mobile OS, Windows and OS X will be supported from day one.

It is also rumored to include a built-in API to allow third party apps with the service, enabling users of the service to store content from other apps on their account.

Unfortunately it looks like we will have to wait until April to find out if the rumors are correct. Google doesn’t usually comment on speculation or rumors and on this occasion it was no different.

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