Google Drive is one of the most popular Cloud services, which offers 15GB just for signing up. Now, we can increase our Google Drive space to 1TB for two years, worth $9,99/month, without paying a dime. We just need to be actively using Google Maps, as a "local guide".
Sign up as a Local Guide
Local guides are a group of Google Maps users that fill-in the information for local businesses, leave reviews, upload photographs, correct mistakes, and answer questions.
To sign up as a local guide, we just need to visit:
The only prerequisite is that we have a Google account, with our Google+ profile activated. If we haven't bothered with Google+ yet, the website will ask us to upgrade to Google+.
With an active Google+ profiles, we just need to select our city, confirm we are 18 years or older, and agree to receive email updates about the Local Guides community.
Earning points as a Local Guide
Having signed up as a Local Guide, there are up to five ways to earn points for every local business on Google Maps.
We can upload pictures for a business.
We can write reviews. We need to write a full review, just leaving a rating won't count for getting a point.
We can add new businesses or existing companies that weren't on Google Maps...
...fix any wrong information...
...and answer any questions.
Each of the above will award us one point, which means we can get up to five points per business, provided that all five options are available.
To coordinate our actions, we can visit the "Your contributions" option on the Google Maps menu, where we will get suggestions for local businesses to review, based on our Location History.
If we own a smartphone with internet access and Google Maps, through the same "Your contributions" we will also see how many points we have accrued so far, and which level we have reached.
For some reason, the option to see our points isn't available on the desktop version of Google maps.
You should note that the points aren't awarded real-time, they might take up to 24 hours to appear.
When will I get the 1TB free on Google Drive?
Depending on the points we collect and the level we reach, we get the following rewards:
- Level 1 (0 - 4 points): Participation in exclusive contests (think new Google devices) in select countries.
- Level 2 (5 - 49 points): Early access to new Google products and features.
- Level 3 (50 - 199 points): Show up in the Google Maps app with our official Local Guides badge.
- Level 4 (200 - 499 points): Receive a free 1 TB upgrade of our Drive storage, valid for two years.
- Level 5 (500+ points): The very top Local Guides will become eligible to apply to attend our inaugural summit in 2016, where you’ll be able to meet other top Guides from around the world, explore the Google campus, and get the latest info about Google Maps.
So, to get the 1TB free, we much reach level four, which means amassing at least 200 points.
It won't happen overnight, but we can aim for it in a couple of weeks.
Will you participate as a Local Guide for 1TB on Google Drive?
Does increasing your Google Drive storage motivate you to contribute to Google Maps? Or are you satisfied with the 15GB you already have? Leave us a comment.