Microsoft OneDrive has pinched one of the best Google Drive features

OneDrive on a Laptop
(Image credit: Shutterstock - monticello)

Microsoft is launching an update for cloud storage service OneDrive that will help users more easily control who has access to their files.

As per a new entry in the company’s product roadmap, Microsoft OneDrive users will soon benefit from the ability to specify access permissions before copying a sharing link for a file.

“We are updating the copy link command to give customers the ability to change their link type and permissions prior to generating a new link and pasting it into the app of their choice,” explained Microsoft.

The feature is currently in the process of rolling out, but should take effect for all OneDrive users by the end of the month.

Microsoft OneDrive vs. Google Drive

The new OneDrive feature bears a striking resemblance to functionality already available with rival service Google Drive, which has long offered the ability to tweak access permissions before copying a link. 

Over the years, the two services have gone head-to-head, but the latest data suggests Google’s platform currently holds the advantage.

According to an exclusive TechRadar Pro poll carried out recently by OnePulse, Google Drive is by far the most popular cloud storage provider, used by 44.1% of respondents. Microsoft’s service, meanwhile, manages only third in the rankings with an 11.2% share, lagging behind both Google Drive and iCloud.

The survey also highlighted how difficult it is to encourage people to switch provider once they have become embedded in a company’s ecosystem. The vast majority of respondents (83.7%) said they have been using the same cloud storage service for at least a year, while a third have been loyal to their provider for five years or more.

Although this latest upgrade is unlikely to swing the balance, Microsoft will nonetheless hope that a consistent flow of enhancements will help improve its position in the market.

In addition to the new file sharing facility, the company has rolled out a number of updates in recent months. In the latter quarter of 2021, for example, OneDrive received a simple suite of photo editing features, a pinning feature for the Quick Access menu, a new sync app for Apple M1 Macs and more. 

Joel Khalili
News and Features Editor

Joel Khalili is the News and Features Editor at TechRadar Pro, covering cybersecurity, data privacy, cloud, AI, blockchain, internet infrastructure, 5G, data storage and computing. He's responsible for curating our news content, as well as commissioning and producing features on the technologies that are transforming the way the world does business.