OneDrive vs Google Drive: What’s the Difference?

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OneDrive vs Google Drive: What’s the Difference?

Key Points

  • OneDrive offers 5 GB of free storage while Google Drive offers 15 GB for free.
  • OneDrive supports a maximum file size of 100 GB while Google Drive supports a maximum file size of 5 TB.
  • OneDrive supports a greater number of file types including 3-D modeling and printing files, Apple and Adobe files, audio and video files, image files, and game engine files.
  • OneDrive has a vast list of compatible platforms and integrated services, while Google Drive primarily integrates with other Google products and services.
  • The choice between OneDrive and Google Drive may come down to personal preference based on whether you are a Microsoft or Google user.

Torn between OneDrive and Google Drive? Both of these two popular cloud storage options offer convenient ways to store, access, and share files in the cloud. While both services serve a similar purpose, they differ in several key areas. What’s the difference between OneDrive and Google Drive, and which of the two is best? Let’s delve into the similarities and differences between these two cloud storage solutions to find an answer.

OneDrive vs Google Drive: Side By Side Comparison

AspectOneDriveGoogle Drive
First LaunchedAugust 1st, 2007 (as SkyDrive)April 24th, 2012
Storage5GB (free)
200GB (paid)
1TB (Microsoft 365 account)
15GB (free)
100GB to 30TB (paid)
Unlimited (G Suite Business)
Available PlatformsMicrosoft Office, Microsoft Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Xbox 360, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/SWeb, Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Available Languages100+100+
Integrated ServicesMicrosoft Office, Outlook, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Bing, Windows Live Groups, Samsung GalleryGoogle Docs Editors, Google Chrome, Google Workspace
Maximum File Size100GB5TB

OneDrive vs Google Drive: What’s the Difference?

While both OneDrive and Google Drive offer cloud storage options, these two services couldn’t be more different. These differences go far beyond their unique URLs and brand names, too. Let’s examine some of the key differences that exist between OneDrive vs Google Drive below. By the conclusion, we’ll be able to see which cloud storage service is superior.

Storage Capacity

First and foremost, how do OneDrive and Google Drive compare in terms of storage capacity? OneDrive’s free plan offers 5GB of free storage, while Google Drive offers free users 15GB of storage. Beyond this, OneDrive supports a maximum file size of 100GB. Conversely, Google Drive supports a maximum file size of 5TB. Google Drive is clearly more equipped for a greater storage capacity than OneDrive.


Secondly, let’s consider pricing between OneDrive vs Google Drive. Microsoft 365 accounts start at $19.99 a year and stretch up to $99.99 a year for individual users. Business accounts start at $5.00 per user per month and range up to $12.50 per user per month. Google Drive offers subscriptions at similar price points. Personal plans begin at $1.99 a month or $19.99 a year and stretch up to $9.99 a month or $99.99 a year. However, Google gives you more cloud storage for your buck compared to OneDrive.

Supported File Types

What good is a cloud storage service without extensive support for a wide variety of file types? Both platforms support a wide range of types, including documents, spreadsheets, presentations, images, videos, and more. However, OneDrive supports a greater number of types. OneDrive offers support for 3-D modeling and printing files, Apple and Adobe files, audio and video files, image files, and even game engine files. Google Drive still supports plenty of file types, but not nearly as many in all.

Google's suite of apps, platforms, and services in a folder on an iPhone screen.
Google integrates Drive’s cloud storage functionality into a majority of its products and services.


Integrated Services and Platforms

Now, what about available platforms and integrated services? OneDrive’s list of compatible platforms is truly vast. From Microsoft Office to Microsoft Windows, iOS to Android, and Xbox 360 to Xbox Series X/S, OneDrive is there for all users’ file-sharing needs. Its network of integrated services is just as large, ranging from social media sites to productivity software and beyond. Google Drive looks quite limited by comparison, primarily integrating with other Google products and services and a select few web and mobile platforms.


Lastly, there’s the simple difference in ownership between OneDrive and Google Drive. This point speaks less to functionality and more to preference. Are you a Microsoft person or a Google person? The answer to this question will have a direct impact on which service you prefer overall. Microsoft users are probably going to be more comfortable with OneDrive, while Google users are likely to prefer Google Drive.

OneDrive vs Google Drive: 5 Must-Know Facts

  • OneDrive has built-in support for other Microsoft products such as Windows, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook. This helps facilitate a unified experience throughout the Microsoft ecosystem, boosting productivity and collaboration as a result.
  • Google Drive integrates seamlessly with other Google applications such as Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides. This seamless integration allows for easy creation, editing, and sharing of documents directly within Google Drive, effectively streamlining productivity in the process.
  • OneDrive keeps track of file versions, allowing you to recover previous versions if need be. This handy feature provides a safety net in case of accidental changes or deletions. Google Drive offers something similar, as well.
  • Google Drive offers 15GB of free storage to every user, shared across Google Drive, Gmail, and Google Photos. OneDrive offers just 5GB of free storage by comparison. Both give users the option to purchase more cloud storage for an additional monthly or annual fee.
  • OneDrive supports a massive range of file types, including documents, spreadsheets, presentations, images, videos, and more. Google Drive supports many of the same file types, but OneDrive’s support is far more vast.

The History of OneDrive

Microsoft OneDrive is a cloud storage service that allows users to store their files and access them from various supported devices and platforms. It first launched in 2007 under the name Microsoft SkyDrive. SkyDrive was one of the first major services to allow users to upload and share files in the cloud. It offered users just 5GB of free storage. It’s not a lot by today’s standards, but it more than sufficed at the time.

The success of SkyDrive spawned the development of rival cloud storage services such as Dropbox and Google Drive. With this influx of cloud storage competitors, Microsoft felt it was high time for a rebrand. In 2012, the company dropped the Windows name and leaned into the SkyDrive branding. They pivoted yet again in 2014, instead changing their name to OneDrive. This new name also brought new features, such as improved integration with other Windows and Office programs and more support for mobile storage.

With the transition to OneDrive, Microsoft introduced a new range of subscription tiers for increased cloud storage options. In addition to the 5GB of free storage, OneDrive users could pay for up to 200GB of additional cloud storage. Paid Microsoft 365 users can enjoy up to 1TB of storage and link up to five additional accounts for as much as 6TB of shared storage. Today, OneDrive remains one of the most widely used cloud storage services for individuals, businesses, and organizations alike.

OneDrive logo on laptop screen.
Microsoft OneDrive began as SkyDrive before rebranding in 2014.


How Google Drive Compares

There’s good reason to debate OneDrive vs Google Drive: The latter is one of the former’s biggest competitors. Google Drive is a rival cloud storage service that allows users to access their files across a variety of Google platforms. While Google didn’t launch Drive until 2012, its history dates back to the launch of Google Docs in 2006. At the outset, Google Docs focused on online document editing and collaboration features. However, it also offered users some free cloud storage for limited file types.

Come 2012, Google spun off this cloud storage feature into its own platform called Google Drive. It combined the functionalities of Google Docs with expanded storage options and greater support for more file types. With this, users could now store more than just documents. Drive supports photo, video, and other unique file uploads as well. Plus, users receive 15GB of storage space for free with the ability to purchase up to 30TB of additional space.

Google Drive was immediately appealing for the way it integrated with other Google services like Gmail, Google Sheets, Google Docs, and more. By allowing users to attach files from their Drive to their emails easily, Google effectively stretched Drive’s reach far beyond its initial user base. It caught on fast. Few other services can compete with Google Drive’s collaborative features, such as real-time workspaces, live commenting, suggested edits, and more. It continues to be a popular choice for individuals, businesses, and educational institutions across the board.

OneDrive vs Google Drive: Pros and Cons

Pros of OneDriveCons of OneDrive
Supports most file typesOnly 5 GB of free storage
Microsoft 365 integrationNo unlimited plan
Great offline functionalityLimited third-party integrations
Strong securityNot as many collaborative features
Pros of Google DriveCons of Google Drive
15GB of free storageStorage is spread across Google Docs Editors
Unlimited storage plan for businessesLimited available platforms
Supports files as large as 5TBConcerns about privacy due to past leaks
Integration with Google Docs EditorsFew third-party integrations

OneDrive vs Google Drive: Which Is Best?

Who wins the OneDrive vs Google Drive debate? In the end, the question of the best cloud storage service depends on your specific needs and preferences. Both platforms offer convenient ways to store and access files in the cloud. However, the two go about this function in very different ways. OneDrive excels in Microsoft integration and offline functionality, while Google Drive shines with its generous free storage, extensive collaboration features, and seamless integration with other Google services. In the end, Google Drive edges ahead for its large file size support and greater free storage.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much free storage does OneDrive offer?

OneDrive offers up to 5GB of free storage to all users. This storage can be used to store your files, photos, videos, and other content in the cloud. Compare this to Google Drive, which offers 15GB of free storage to all users.

Is OneDrive secure?

Yes, OneDrive takes security and privacy very seriously. OneDrive files are protected with encryption both during transit and at rest. Users can also set up two-step verification for an added layer of security. All in all, Microsoft implements strict privacy policies to safeguard your data and gives you control over your privacy settings.

Does Google Drive work offline?

Yes, you can still access your files offline with Google Drive. However, you have to enable offline mode first. With this, you can view and edit your files using Google Drive’s mobile app or the Google Chrome browser without an Internet connection and the changes will sync when you reconnect to the net.

How does collaboration work on Google Drive?

Google Drive is well-known for its collaboration features. Users can easily share files and folders with others, control their access permissions, and collaborate in real time on documents, spreadsheets, and presentations using Google Docs Editors.

Is Google Drive the same as Google Docs?

Google Drive is an offshoot of Google Docs. At the outset, cloud storage space was included in Google Docs. Due to the feature’s popularity, Google spun off Google Drive into its own service in 2012 to create a designated place for cloud storage and file sharing.

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