If you’re thinking about moving from an alternative word processor to Google Docs, or you’ve been using Google Docs and you’re worried about a surprise fee, we’re here to help you figure things out.
Google Docs is a word processor that functions on the web from your favourite browser. You may use any computer with an internet connection to create, edit, and share documents. For Android and iOS, there’s even a mobile app.
The collaborative capabilities of Google Docs set it apart from its major desktop competition, Microsoft Word. One of the earliest word processors that provide shared online document editing was Google Docs and thanks to these characteristics, it has become the new go-to for students, freelancers, and enterprises.
From a browser window, Google has made it exceedingly simple to share documents among platforms and collaborate on them in real-time. To read or modify Google documents you share with them, they don’t even need a Google account.
This sounds great, right? So, while Microsoft Word will cost you around $70.00, or about a fiver a month, Google Docs must surely cost the same – if not more?
How Much Does Google Docs Cost?
Use of Google Docs, as well as Google Sheets, Google Slides and Google Forms, is completely free of charge. The only time you could possibly encounter fees is if you keep all your documents saved to your Google Drive and use up your 15GB of free storage.
However, filling up your Drive with just documents would take about 250,000 3-page documents. If anybody did reach this number, they could even then clear some older files or simply download them all locally and clear from the cloud.
If you have filled up your Google Drive space, which can easily happen if you’re using it to store full quality photos and videos, it will then only cost $1.99/month to increase the storage capacity to 100GB.
Or, you can simply continue to create your Docs for free and then download them to your computer each time instead of saving them to Drive.
What Is Google Drive?
Google Drive is an online file-storage service that lets you download and upload files to and from the cloud. Files in Google Drive may be viewed and/or edited by you or others from a variety of places and devices. There are no file type limitations on Google Drive, and all data is encrypted, enabling you to provide authorization for others to view or edit the files.
You already have access to Google Drive and 15GB of free storage space if you have a Google account. If you don’t already have a Google account, you can quickly sign up by simply creating one.
Your Google Drive can be accessed via any web browser on a computer, the Google Drive desktop application, or the Google Drive mobile application.
After you’ve made an account or just logged in, you can create Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Forms, which you can then save to your Drive (which happens automatically while you work as long as you have storage space) or download to your computer in whatever format you desire.
Google Docs Tips & Tricks
Even if you’re already familiar with Google Docs’ multi-user features, keyboard shortcuts, and other benefits, there may be a few useful tips you’re unaware of. Here are some helpful hints that will turn you into a certified Google Docs guru, from its built-in web browser to its transcribing tool.
1. One-Step New Doc Creation
Although creating a new Google Doc isn’t difficult, there is a technique to make it a one-step procedure. Instead of going to a blank page on Google Drive, simply put “docs.new” or “doc.new” into your browser’s search box, and you’ll be sent to a new document.
This can be especially useful when you need to take quick notes or you’ve been struck by sudden inspiration. Just try not to then sit staring at that blank document for too long.
2. Display Your Word Count As You Type
If checking the word count after nearly every sentence you type is a familiar obsession – whether you’re writing something with a strict word limit or simply procrastinating in a way that almost feels productive, you can click “Display word count while typing,” which is at the bottom of the word count pop-up box in the “Tools” section.
In the bottom left corner of the screen, you’ll now notice the word count, which you may expand to view the character count and the number of pages you’ve typed.
3. Browse The Web Or Look Up A Word From Your Document
If you’re like me and hate having too many tabs open, even after Chrome added tab-grouping with colour-coding, you’re in for a treat here.
To search for information on the web within your Google Document, you can navigate to “Tools” and click “Explore”, or use the “Control+Alt+Shift+I” shortcut on PC or “Command+Option+Shift+I” on Mac.
To look up a word with the Google Docs built-in dictionary, there’s another option to click in the “Tools” section – called “Dictionary”, of course. Alternatively, you can use the “Control+Shift+Y” shortcut on your PC, or “Command+Shift+Y” on a Mac.
If you want to look up something or define a word that has already been typed, you can right-click on that word or highlight a phrase and select either “Explore” or “Define”.
4. Utilise “Offline Editing” Mode
If you’re often working while out and about – maybe on the train or from a pub garden in the sunshine – you can work on your Google Docs documents even when you can’t connect to the internet.
Even if you don’t anticipate being without an internet connection at any point, Wi-Fi or power outages are always a possibility s it’s a good idea to activate offline editing just in case.
Install the Google Docs Offline extension, then navigate to your Google Docs homepage, click the main menu icon (three horizontal lines in the top left corner), and select “Settings.” Then, click the grey “offline” button to enable it.
Jake is a professional copywriter, journalist, and life-long fan of technology. He covers news and user guides for KnowYourMobile.