In this article, we are going to share with you the main Differences Between Google Drive and Dropbox.
Understand the difference between the two major online file storage solutions
Many people don’t realize that Dropbox is about 5 years older than Google Drive.
However, the power of Google’s resources alone has turned Google Drive into the single biggest competitor to Dropbox.
Both services offer free storage, with significant differences.
Today, each is competing for a growing number of users who continue to do more of their work in the cloud than ever before.
Table of Contents
Differences Between Google Drive and Dropbox
In this article, we’ll look at the pros and cons of Google Drive versus Dropbox, and help you decide which service is right for you.
#1. Overall Comparison
- More storage space
- More built-in apps
- Simplify your Google experience
- Fast and intuitive
- Sync entire documents
- Referral program for more free storage
- Integrated with more third parties
- Expand your cloud experience
- Clunky but easy to use
- Faster partial file sync
Both cloud storage providers have a lot to offer.
Each has its own unique approach to encryption and which applications and services they integrate.
However, they are similar in terms of collaboration, synchronization between desktop and mobile devices, and the convenience of working remotely.
Google Drive offers more storage space up front and provides easy integration with almost all Google apps and services.
But Dropbox sync times are faster because DropBox’s file sync algorithm is more sophisticated.
And its integration with so many third-party apps and services makes DropBox a better choice for those who don’t use a lot of Google services.
#2. Google Drive and Dropbox Storage Space Comparison
- More storage tiers
- Available up to 30 TB
- Storage used by other services from Google
- More storage is available for free
- Lower pricing options
- 3 TB storage ceiling
- Cloud storage exclusive
- Very limited storage for free accounts
You’ll get 15 GB of free storage when you first sign up for Google Drive.
However, Keep in mind that this storage space is used for some Google services.
You can upgrade your Google Drive account to 100 GB for just $1.99/mo up to 30 TB for $149.99/mo.
There are six levels to choose from.
The highest tier of 100 GB is marketed as “Google One”.
As for Dropbox, you’ll get 2 GB for the Basic free account.
DropBox’s tier structure is much simpler than Google’s.
You can upgrade your DropBox account to 2 TB for $9.99/month or 3 TB for $16.58/month.
Basically, the prices between the two services are parallel.
But you can increase the space up to 3 TB with Dropbox.
Plus, Dropbox doesn’t make you waste its storage space with an email service that can take up a lot of space.
#3. Embedded Apps
- More embedded apps
- Convenient for Google users
- Larger app library
- Some low-quality apps
- Some default app offerings
- Integrates with more services you use
- The app libraries are all high quality
- Dropbox Paper is very basic
When you select New in Google Drive, you will see the option to create a new file using Google Docs, Google Sheets, Google Forms, Google Slides, Google sites, Google Drawings, Google My Maps, and the ability to connect with over a hundred online applications.
If you select Create New File in Dropbox, you’ll see fewer embedded apps than Google Drive.
This includes Dropbox Paper, HelloSign, Transfer, and Showcase (with the top payout rates).
Dropbox provides an App Center where you can choose from 50 to 60 third-party integrations that Dropbox can connect to.
Such as Microsoft Office, Zoom, WhatsApp, Trello, Slack, and others.
While it seems that Dropbox offers Paper as a Google Docs partner, Google Docs is far superior.
Dropbox Paper is more than just a Notepad app with some great features.
#4. Sync Change
Both Google Drive and DropBox, sync both almost real-time
- Slower file sync
- Selective sync of files to local folder
- Sync may require more bandwidth
- Uses fast block-level file sync
- Smart Sync shows cloud files in local folders
- Sync is more bandwidth-efficient
Syncing isn’t a problem if you’re editing files in Google Drive using a cloud-based app like Google Sheets or Google Docs.
You can even collaborate on editing documents in real-time.
However, if you plan on doing a lot of work offline and syncing those changes, Dropbox wins hands down.
This is because Google Drive transfers the entire file during each sync.
Dropbox, on the other hand, uses an algorithm called “block-level file transfer”, which divides files into smaller “blocks.”
Only blocks that have been changed are transferred and synced.
Currently, both services offer the ability to view content in your cloud storage inside your local folder.
Dropbox has always provided this in the form of their “Smart Sync” feature.
Whereas Google recently added it as “Selective Sync”.
#5. Comparison of Collaboration on Google Drive and DropBox
- Integrated with Google Meet
- Real-time collaborative editing
- Conversational tools in documents
- Integrated with Zoom
- Real-time collaborative editing
- Conversational tools in documents
Both cloud storage services have integrated video conferencing services.
You can use Google Meet with Google Drive, and Zoom with Dropbox.
Multiple users on Google Drive can work on a document simultaneously in real-time.
You can watch other people edit files, have IM chats, and each can comment on documents.
With Dropbox, you can collaborate on Office documents in real-time.
This is thanks to the Dropbox integration with Office Online. There is a comment feature in real-time.
When it comes to collaboration, Google Drive and DropBox are evenly matched.
#6. Security and Privacy
Google Drive and DropBox guarantee the security of the files you store in their cloud storage services.
- Better file transfer encryption
- More vulnerable to government data requests
- All files are at risk during transit
- Better encryption of file storage
- Activists against the government reach
- Only blocks files at risk during transit
Google combines AES 256-bit file storage encryption for any file transfer and 128-bit AES encryption for files in (silent) storage.
Dropbox, on the other hand, uses stronger encryption for inactive files (256-bit AES), and weaker security (128-bit AES encryption) for files being transferred.
While this helps Dropbox achieve faster file sync times than Google Drive, it also comes with more vulnerable security.
But since Dropbox only syncs “blocks” of files, not entire files, that risk is reduced.
Google Drive is far superior to DropBox
Both services are excellent choices when it comes to cloud-based collaboration.
Google Drive wins when it comes to free storage space, the convenience of deep integration with all Google services, and solid security.
Google Drive also has a more intuitive user interface.
On the other hand, Dropbox excels in terms of its much faster file sync algorithm, the large field of popular apps and services it integrates with, and its integration with today’s most popular online video conferencing service, Zoom.
Google Drive is far superior because for Google users, the convenience of integrating Drive with Google services is a must-have.
Given that Google’s usage is close to 2 billion worldwide, it’s no small matter.
As for anyone who doesn’t use a lot of Google services or apps, Dropbox might be a better choice if you like the flexibility of using your cloud storage with a variety of other third-party apps and services.