(NEW YORK) — Google wants you to think of it as your new hard drive. The Internet giant is launching its Google Drive Cloud storage service Tuesday, which will offer any Google user five gigabytes of free online storage — enough space to store about 1,000 songs or thousands of documents. You will be able to access your files anywhere and store them in the so-called cloud — Google’s vast banks of Internet servers — for free.
Google has long been rumored to be working on such a service, and Tuesday the company is releasing it to the masses. It will begin rolling out to all on Tuesday afternoon, Google Drive’s product manager, Scott Johnston, told ABC News.
“The best way to understand Google Drive is to look at it as an evolution of letting people work successfully in the cloud. We have focused a lot on collaboration with Google Docs and we are doing the same thing now with Google Drive,” Johnston said.
Google will offer both Mac and Windows Google Drive programs. Once you have downloaded those, you will be able to drag your files into the Google Drive folders created on your Mac or Windows computer and they will automatically be uploaded to your Google Drive.
You can access your Google Drive on any web browser right through your Google account (the same one you’d use for Gmail, Google+ or Google Docs). There you will have control over who you can share files with.
Google will also offer an Android app starting today, which will let you access your Drive files on a phone and upload files to the Drive. It is working on iPhone and iPad apps, which should be out soon, said Johnston.
If you run out of that space, you can upgrade to 25GB for $2.49 a month, 100GB for $4.99 a month, and 200GB for $9.99 a month. Google will offer plans up to 16 terabytes, which will cost $799.99 a month. It will also offer business plans.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Tara Bench, KSL.com
Cristina Alesci Seth Fiegerman and Charles Riley, CNN