Thursday, May 07, 2015

Google Drive vs. Dropbox - Episode 258

Someone commented on my last post about Google Drive vs Dropbox and said that only Drive requires people to sign in when you send them a link to a folder.  This is untrue.

When I share a dropbox link to someone without a dropbox account and they click on it this is what pops up:

The user can click the 'x' and proceed to click the very useful big blue "Download" button. So it is not true that Dropbox requires you to log in (I never claimed that) but it does ask if you want to sign up which is still annoying for non-dropbox users. It gives the illusion that they have to sign up in order to get the files.

However, when I share a Google Drive link to a folder and someone without a Google account clicks on it this is what they see:

There is no requirement to sign in which is great. But you will note, however, that there is still no clear way for people to download the files from the Drive folder. All people see is the big blue "Sign In" button. This button ends up doing the same thing that Dropbox does. It insinuates that the user must Sign in to do anything with those files. They do not realize that they can click on each file individually and click an obscure looking download button to download each file at a time.  

This is what it looks like when a user clicks on a file:

The interface is nice and it actually works great. The usability is far nicer and slicker than Dropbox but the lack of a "Download All" button for people who are not signed in is a real problem. This is the problem I covered in my previous Drive vs Dropbox post.

It really needs to be addressed though.