Google Drive: Dropbox killer or mediocre also ran?

It’s one of Silicon Valley’s greatest pink elephants: Why doesn’t Google offer a cloud storage service to rival Dropbox,, or Microsoft’s SkyDrive? Google has the most internet-connected servers in the world, the largest combined storage of any web company, and already offers photo storage (Picasa), document storage (Docs), music storage (Music), but for some reason it has never offered a unified Google Drive. According to people familiar with the matter, however, our wait is almost over: Google’s Hard Drive In The Sky is coming soon, possibly “within weeks.”
Feature-wise, it sounds like Google Drive will be comparable to Dropbox, with free basic storage (5GB?) and additional space for a yearly fee. Presumably, Google Drive will show you a directory view of all the files you have stored on Google’s servers (pictured right), from photos to music to email attachments — kind of like a revamped and omnipresent Google Docs. It is possible that Google’s revised privacy policy, which comes into effect at the beginning of March, makes this kind of unification possible. This will be a useful addition to Google’s web services, but hardly a killer feature — until you look at the pricing for additional space.