Why I Switched from Dropbox to Google Drive

Posted by David Chism | Wed, Jan 29, 2014

I have been a hap­py Drop­box users since around 2009. I real­ly do not have any com­plaints about Drop­box. It is one of the eas­i­est and best file shar­ing and cloud stor­age apps ever made. I love the desk­top sync­ing. I love the web ver­sion. I love the mobile apps! So why on earth would I switch to Google Dri­ve and stop using Dropbox?

Using Both Drop­box and Drive

gdrive-logoIn 2009, I slow­ly began using Google Dri­ve main­ly to cre­ate sim­ple Google Docs and Spread­sheets that I did­n’t care much about how they looked. It was more for inter­nal use. Then I began to cre­ate more docs and spread­sheets and share them with oth­er Google users. The prob­lem with all of this was that I used Drop­box for stor­ing just about every­thing dig­i­tal: pic­tures, files, doc­u­ments, spread­sheets etc. When I would go look for a file, I would ques­tion for a moment, did I store that file in Drop­box or GDrive?

After years of stor­ing things in two places, it began to get very dis­or­ga­nized, annoy­ing, and a big headache, not to men­tion a waste of time. I liked Google Dri­ve because it was easy to use and had great col­lab­o­ra­tion fea­tures. I did not have to con­stant­ly be down­load­ing and upload­ing changes via email attachments.

Some­thing Had to Change

Fast for­ward to 2013. This was the year Google Dri­ve, in my opin­ion, became more and more like Drop­box. They cre­at­ed their desk­top app so I could store files on and offline just like Drop­box. They con­tin­ued to make their file shar­ing and inte­gra­tion with key pro­grams I used very strong. I was able to begin using Gmail to send links (access) to files, instead of hefty files that would take for­ev­er to upload/​download. Yes, you could do this with Drop­box, but because I was such a heavy Gmail user, I want­ed to use less 3rd par­ty apps. There was still just one thing keep­ing me from cold turkey switch­ing from Drop­box to Google Dri­ve com­plete­ly. Google Dri­ve was not 100% bug free and also had a learn­ing curve (my time). I need­ed to set aside time and learn Google Drive.

The Switch

Towards the end of last year, Thanks­giv­ing time, I found myself lik­ing Google Dri­ve more and see­ing less bugs. I still had the prob­lem of sav­ing things in both Dri­ve and Drop­box and pur­posed it was time to make the switch. I knew it would not be easy, but it would be worth the effort. So for about 2 weeks, I slow­ly began to migrate my fold­ers from Drop­box to Dri­ve. The key to a smooth tran­si­tion was this: I made the Google Dri­ve fold­er struc­ture look how I had it in Drop­box. In ear­ly Decem­ber, I was 100% work­ing off of Google Drive.

I’m Lik­ing It

The first few weeks of being on Dri­ve com­plete­ly was a lit­tle rough. I had to call Google Sup­port and talk to them about how things worked. Once I got that squared away, I was hap­py with my deci­sion to use 1 pro­gram for file stor­age and col­lab­o­rat­ing. (Side note: I was also hap­py to see that my favorite project man­age­ment pro­gram, Base­camp, had an inte­gra­tion to Google Drive…made my deci­sion easier).

Should Your Team Switch to Google Drive?

That is a hard ques­tion to answer. If you are a Google Apps user, Google Dri­ve is a fan­tas­tic tool. The spread­sheets are more robust than they used to be. Also, if you still want to use Microsoft Excel, you can save your doc­u­ments in Google Dri­ve, just like you do in Drop­box now. Dri­ve and Drop­box have the same file sav­ing fea­tures, but Dri­ve offers the inte­gra­tion to Gmail and Col­lab­o­ra­tion tools, which to me, make it an easy deci­sion to switch. It is eas­i­er said than done, though. There is a learn­ing curve. You have to get used to how things are saved and shared. It would require some change of thought on your end on how to save and share files. Yet after a cou­ple of weeks on the sys­tem (like any new tool), you’ll get the hang of it.

Now that I have been 2 months on Google Dri­ve only, my mind has stopped spin­ning, won­der­ing where I’m sav­ing files. It has been a good deci­sion on my end, and it even saved me a few bucks a month as well. Drop­box for teams is a lit­tle cost­ly, and in my deal­ings with their sup­port, they do not have any plans to low­er their price any­time soon. 

About David Chism

David Chism started his business out of a passion for helping small contracting businesses grow, be more profitable and become better known to their target clients. One lifelong hobby of David is using techie gadgets. So this blog is a place where he writes about technology, marketing ideas, just for fun (humor), personal thoughts on small business and more.


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