Having offered extra space to consumers for the past few months, Google is now providing Apps customers with the same option.
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Google on Wednesday said that over the next few days it plans to make User Managed Storage available to Google Apps customers, a benefit that those using personal Google Accounts have had since late last year.
User Managed Storage is just what its name suggests: extra online storage capacity, available for a fee. Pricing is as follows: 20 GB for $5 per year; 80 GB for $20 per year; 200 GB for $50 per year; 400 GB for $100 per year; or $256 per year for each additional TB. Extra storage must be bought through Google Checkout.
The space can be used to store files for Google Docs, Picasa Web Albums, or photos published through Blogger. Google Apps product manager Gaurav Jain suggests that users of Google Cloud Connect for Microsoft Office might benefit from extra storage if they're importing a significant number of Microsoft Office files.
Business users of Google Apps will have to ask their administrator to enable the service for their accounts.
Google provides 1 GB of storage for photos and videos in Picasa Web Albums. Photos posted using Blogger or Buzz count toward this quota. Docs also comes with 1 GB of storage for uploaded files; files created in Docs do not count toward this limit but do have individual size constraints.
Gmail comes with 7+ GB of storage and the Google is continually increasing this quota in small increments. Users of Google Apps for Business receive 25 GB for their Gmail storage.
User Managed Storage for Google Apps users cannot be used for Gmail -- business users' Gmail storage allotment is determined by the particular edition of Google Apps paid for by their organization. Individual Google Apps users and those using the relevant services under personal Google Accounts can use purchased storage for Gmail.
Google in the Enterprise SurveyThere's no doubt Google has made headway into businesses: Just 28 percent discourage or ban use of its productivity products, and 69 percent cite Google Apps' good or excellent mobility. But progress could still stall: 59 percent of nonusers distrust the security of Google's cloud. Its data privacy is an open question, and 37 percent worry about integration.