SharePoint vs. Google Drive: Differences and Similarities

Jorge Farah March 31, 2023
- 7 min read

There are several different file storage vendors out there, and choosing one over the other can be a bit complex. On the surface, they all seem similar, but multiple differences arise if you take a closer look. Here, you'll find the ones that appear once you compare SharePoint vs. Google Drive.

Their main difference is that SharePoint is a Microsoft product, while Drive belongs to Google. Hence, they integrate seamlessly with their respective suites of apps but not so well with others. So, your starting point to choose between them should be what other tools are part of your organization's technology landscape.

But that's just stating the obvious. Keep reading for a complete match between them!

How to choose a file storage provider?

When deciding on a file storage provider, be sure to consider the following:

  • How much space do you need? Compare the cost per GB of storage offered by each provider.
  • Can your team easily access the stored files? Check for ease of use and accessibility.
  • What security measures are in place to protect your data? Look for advanced features such as encryption and multi-factor authentication.
  • Are there tools for teamwork, like real-time editing and commenting? Check for collaboration capabilities.
  • Can the provider integrate with your current tools and services, like email or project management platforms? Consider integration options.
  • Is the cost within your budget? Compare pricing and make sure it fits within your financial constraints.
  • Is the service user-friendly and easy to use? Check for a straightforward interface.
  • Is there adequate technical support and resources available? Make sure the provider offers help when you need it.

In addition, it's best to test out a provider with a free trial or demo before fully committing. This way, you can be sure it fits your needs and provides what you're looking for in a file storage solution.

SharePoint vs. Google Drive comparison

When it comes to choosing between SharePoint and Google Drive for your business, there are a lot of factors to consider. Let's take a closer look at both platforms and what they offer.

1. Features

SharePoint boasts an impressive array of enterprise-level collaboration and document management tools, like custom lists, workflows, and add-ins. Meanwhile, Google Drive is known for its user-friendly interface and strong collaboration features like real-time co-editing and commenting.

2. Performance

At this level, both get excellent grades. They are fast and reliable, and interruptions or failures are most likely caused by the user's internet connection or the number of users accessing the system.

3. Pricing and storage

When it comes to their plans, SharePoint tends to be a bit more expensive than Google Drive.

  • SharePoint lacks a free option, and its basic plan starts at USD5/user/month for 1 TB of OneDrive storage per user.
  • Google Drive, on the contrary, provides users with a free plan (with limited storage), and its paid plans start at $6/user/month for unlimited storage.

4. Office app integration

We already mentioned that they both integrate smoothly with their companies' suite of applications. This means that SharePoint works perfectly with Microsoft Office and other business products, while Drive does the same with Google Docs, Sheets, etc. It's worth mentioning that it can also be integrated with Microsoft Office through a plugin.

5. File sync and sharing

Of course, both platforms excel at file synchronization and sharing capabilities since they are prepared to support remote work. So, you'll be able to access and update files from multiple devices, as well as share them with other users.

6. Ease of use 

Google Drive has a reputation for its intuitive interface and user-friendliness. On the contrary, SharePoint can be a bit more complex, especially for those unfamiliar with Microsoft products.

Nevertheless, it's important to note that they offer robust mobile capabilities to facilitate remote access and collaboration with apps for iOS and Android devices.

7. Security and privacy

SharePoint and Google Drive offer robust security features, including encryption and multi-factor authentication. But SharePoint goes further with additional security features like data loss prevention and on-premise deployment options for businesses with strict security requirements.

As for privacy, both platforms adhere to industry standards and regulations, but there's a certain amount of concern regarding Google's data collection and usage standards.

8. Customer support

Lastly, the two file storage options offer their clients technical support and resources to help with questions or issues. Google Drive is known for its user-friendly support, while SharePoint offers more enterprise-level options.

Pros and cons of SharePoint and Google Drive

  Advantages Disadvantages
  • Various collaboration features (real-time co-authoring, version history, and team sites).

  • Add-ins, web parts, and custom lists.

  • Seamless integration with the Microsoft Office suite.

  • Enhanced security data (data loss prevention, multi-factor authentication, and on-premise deployment options).

  • Effective support for complex business needs.
  • Steep learning curve.

  • More expensive than other cloud-based file storage and collaboration platforms.

  • The experience with iOS and Android apps is not as robust as the desktop version.

  • Limited integration with other tools and services. 
Google Drive
  • User-friendly interface.

  • Budget-friendly.

  • Seamless integration with other Google services.

  • Remote access from anywhere using their mobile apps for iOS and Android.

  • Helpful support resources, including online help centers and forums. 
  • Despite great collaboration features, it may not be as robust as enterprise-level platforms.

  • Less customization options.

  • Difficulties to integrate it with other tools and services.

  • Privacy concerns regarding data collection and usage.

  • Basic file management features. 

Final thoughts

Ultimately, the choice between SharePoint and Google Drive will come down to your organization's specific needs and requirements, like its size, security needs, customization, and integration with existing tools and services.

Google Drive might be your go-to for a budget and user-friendly platform with powerful mobile features. But if your business demands top-notch collaboration features and robust security, SharePoint might be worth considering.

When deciding, consider cost, usability, mobile support, security, and customer service to determine which platform aligns with your organization's needs. It's about finding the right balance for your company's success.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is SharePoint safer than Google Drive?

SharePoint is generally considered a more secure platform than Google Drive due to its robust security features, such as data loss prevention, multi-factor authentication, and on-premise deployment options for businesses with strict security requirements.

Is OneDrive the same as SharePoint?

No, OneDrive offers individuals a secure and user-friendly platform to store and share personal files in the cloud. At the same time, SharePoint provides businesses with a comprehensive solution for enterprise-level collaboration and content management. With features like team sites, version history, and add-ins, SharePoint offers businesses a robust platform to support their work processes and streamline collaboration among team members.

Read other articles like this : Digital workplace

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