Google Offline Disk ImportEver need to upload massive amounts of data to cloud based storage but can't afford to commit the computing time? Don't have the bandwidth? For $80 you can ship a hard drive to Google and they will upload it to the cloud for you. While currently the service is only available in a 'limited preview' in the United States, this could prove an interesting option for filmmakers needing to store large amounts of data. Hit the jump for more info on Google's Offline Disk Import service.

Offline disk import gives you an option to load data into Google Cloud Storage by sending Google physical hard disk drives (HDDs) of data which we load on your behalf. Using this option can be helpful if you’re limited to a slow, unreliable, or expensive Internet connection.

As cloud storage is becoming more and more affordable, companies like Google are pushing us one step closer to existing entirely within cloud-based editing, storage, and delivery workflows. Go here to sign up to be part of their limited preview of the Offline Disk Import service.

How does it work?

To use offline disk import, write your data to HDDs and then ship the HDDs to a Google import center using a mail carrier. For security during shipment, the data on the HDDs must be encrypted. Upon receiving the HDDs, Google uploads the data into an empty Cloud Storage bucket that you designate. Because the data is loaded directly into Google's network, this approach might be faster or less expensive than transferring data over the Internet.


Offline disk import pricing is based on a flat fee of $80 per HDD irrespective of the drive capacity or data size. Standard Google Cloud Storage pricing fees apply for requests, bandwidth, and storage related to the import and subsequent usage of the data.

Poised to compete for the rapidly expanding cloud media market, Google aims at Amazon, who launched a similar service last year also for $80 but with an additional 3$ per hour transfer fee.

Does this type of service attract your attention? Will you try this out? Share in what ways these could be helpful to your media management habits in the comments below.