Changes to Google Docs hint at GDrive release

New wording in Google Docs points to the service allowing other files to be uploaded by users. This could be an early sign that Google is readying its GDrive for public consumption.

Once PDFs, the change to files could signify big changes afoot at Google Docs.

The sharp eyes over at the Google Operating System blog noticed that Google quietly changed some wording in Google Docs from "PDFs" to "files." While small, this could signal that Google Docs may soon support the viewing and editing of other file types, and possibly double as an online storage service-- like the fabled GDrive.

Google has long-allowed users to upload PDFs to Docs. These could be viewed in Google's online viewer, but not edited. However, the service would not allow other items such as photos and videos to be imported, despite Google offering other products like Picasa and YouTube that would accept these files.

Google began an overhaul of its Docs service late last week, and noted that it was putting in some small changes ahead of a much larger release which was just around the corner. Some of these changes included the addition of special search modifiers that would let users more easily hone searches for their files. Many of these came from Google's search engine and Gmail.

If, in fact, Google Docs allows users to upload other file types for viewing and re-downloading from other locations, it's still a long way from the promise of an integrated, cloud-based storage system. All signs of a GDrive from Google have pointed toward a software component that will allow users to access their Google storage as if it were a local hard disk. Google is also expected to release the service in advance of its Chrome OS, which will make heavy use of files that are stored in the cloud.

 

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