Why Google needs to buy Dropbox

With Apple making a fourth attempt to offer cloud services has generated a lot of buzz, and whilst many are predicting that it won’t work well (the same reasons that the others didn’t work: they are just too restrictive. See previous link,) they are bound to get it right one sooner or later. This means that pretty much every major computing company is offering some form of cloud computing service, and whether you like it or not, it looks as if cloud computing is the future of computing.

So, let me explain why I think Google should buy Dropbox, and why it would be the best cloud computing decision Google has made if they do. It’s going to be hard to keep cloud computing free. If it’s the future of computing, then people are going to start wanting to do everything in the cloud, and eventually a few gigabytes isn’t going to cut it. The other thing is, people don’t want to be paying for each service individually. If people are going to start paying (which, to be economically viable, is going to have to happen at one point or another,) then they want to pay one fee and get all the services. They (well, at least I) want services to be able to share their storage space.

This is where Dropbox comes in. Currently, if I was to pay for cloud storage, it would be with Dropbox, because it’s the most versatile (it is just a hard drive in the sky after all, but a very smart hard drive at that.) If I paid for storage, I would put my music collection in there for starters. Though Google has Music Beta (which is free… while in beta.) I already have a good collection of documents in my Dropbox, but wouldn’t it be nice that, if I were stuck on a computer without Word or Open/Libre Office, I could just log into Google Docs and edit a document quickly, and the changes be reflected in my Dropbox?

I’m already starting to get to the reason. The main reason, well, reasons, are:

  • People only want to pay once (so have it so that services use storage as needed from Dropbox)
  • Having multiple copies of data is annoying (for example, with Google Music, I’m not going to go and delete my music collection off my hard drive, or how about photos in Picasa web? It can apply to anything really)
  • It will help the transition. People are still using office suites (I know I am,) and some just can’t give that up for a limited feature set in Google Docs. Having Google Documents appear in Dropbox, and vice versa, will allow for a smooth transition.
  • Internet connections aren’t always reliable. Since Dropbox syncs with your PC, if an Internet connection isn’t available, then you’re out of luck.
Dropbox incorporates the best features of cloud computing and traditional computing into one product, and if Google had that, then they would have the best cloud computing service on offer. I would quite happily pay a small fee for that.

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