Drive is the cloud storage service from technology giant Google. One of the great things about cloud storage is that it offers the ability to access your data wherever you are. Of course, not everyone carries around a computer with them, but a lot of people will have a smartphone. If you are running an Android device (an operating system which Google owns) then you can download the Google Drive app. This will allow you to access the service much like you would through the web on your computer, but the service has been streamlined to make it easier to use on the smaller screen.
In case you are not aware, Google Drive replaced the Google Docs application. If you have the latter on your phone then you should just be able to update it through Google Play. This article will take a look at the Android app, the features it offers and how it weighs up.
The first page you are greeted with when loading up the app is a list of all your files. This includes not only ones you have uploaded, but also files you have starred or ones that have been shared with you. The main page also offers options for creating a new document or spreadsheet and, of course, the ability to upload files to Drive. A neat thing that the app offers is the ability to add shortcuts that will take you straight to a specific file or folder.
You can tap anything in the list to Share, Rename, Delete or Send it. Files can also be sorted and filtered by things like file name, type or last edit date. You also have the ability to make files available for offline viewing. If you are going somewhere which might have poor network coverage, or there is a file that you need access to at all times, then this is a great feature.
The app also offers the ability to edit your files. The document editor offers standards options like alignment, lists, bold, italic, underline, font colours and tables. You can also edit your spreadsheets and tap cells to edit them. This is great for those who need to make adjustments to their files on the go, like a last minute change for example. The app does not let you edit Presentations and Drawings, however, but this may be changed in future versions.
The app pretty much functions just how you would expect it to and works great as a cloud storage app. However, perhaps a downside is that you can’t password protect it. This means that anyone who has access to your phone can browse all your files. This is something that competitor service Dropbox offers and it would be good if Google could implement the same thing. You do not want your files falling in to the wrong hands, after all.
All in all, Google Drive for Android is a well-designed app for smartphones that integrates well in to the ecosystem. Although it lacks some needed security, everything else here is on top form.
Google Drive for Android
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