Google recently started offering insanely low-priced storage options for Google Drive. You get up to 15GB for free when you sign up and if that’s just not enough space, $2/month will get you 100GB, or fork over $10/month and a terabyte is all yours. While Google Drive is a easy solution for storing your files on the cloud it’s also so much more than that.
Check out this list for some Google Drive tips that wow.
1. Upload and Play Videos from Your Google Drive
Google Drive can store videos up to 10GB in size and you can play them on Google Drive’s website inside their built in video player that looks awfully similar to YouTube’s. Click a file name to open and play the video using the Google Drive video player.
Or, you can watch a video preview in the preview pane. To preview a video, check the box next to its title in Google Drive. Then, click the preview icon
Google Drive supports the following formats for uploading and playing:
- WebM files (Vp8 video codec; Vorbis Audio codec)
- MPEG4, 3GPP and MOV files – (h264 and mpeg4 video codecs; AAC audio codec)
- AVI (MJPEG video codec; PCM audio)
- MPEGPS (MPEG2 video codec; MP2 audio)
- FLV (Adobe – FLV1 video codec, MP3 audio)
2. Stream Your Movie Collection Anywhere with Google Drive
One of the easiest ways to send media to your television is with a Google Chromecast. With a Chromecast you can stream media from your device directly to your TV with a click of a button. To do this, you can use Plex (our favorite media server) which, combined with Google Drive and a Plex Pass ($4/month, $30/year), will let you stream videos from your Drive storage right to any TV you have a Chromecast connected to.
3. Save Space by Syncing Individual Folders
I have never understood why I would want to have all my files on my cloud storage and on my computer at the same time. Luckily, Google Drive’s desktop application will allow you to select which folders in Drive end up syncing to your hard drive. Syncing only the folders you need helps ensure your hard drive doesn’t fill up.
To select folders for syncing, go to the Google Drive preferences on your desktop:
- Click on the Google Drive icon from the menu bar on your Mac or in the Windows taskbar.
- Click Preferences… from the menu.
A window will appear with a list of the top level folders in your Google Drive. Once you select “Only sync some folders to this computer” only the folders you give a check mark will be synced to your computer. Remember to click Apply changes before leaving the window.
4. Listen to Music Files
Google Drive will only let you download stored music from its website. If you want to listen to MP3 or M4A files (OGG and FLAC support coming soon), you can install DriveTunes for Google Chrome. After installation, click on a supported music file and DriveTunes will launch in a separate tab to play the music.
5. Keep Track of Changes
Drive keeps 30 days worth of Google Docs file revisions (up to 100 versions). To look back at a detailed list of edits made to any document, open the revision history from the “File” menu of any Google Doc or by pressing Ctrl-Alt-Shift-G.