Apple Kicks off iCloud – An in-depth Look

iCloud is a domain recently bought by Apple that consists of Music locker, MobileMe and other web services bundled in.

iCloud slides

Apple has been abuzz with activity recently as the new tech “season” kicks in. It has become a tradition for Apple to bring about its products into the market at this time of the year, and with nearly half a week for the WWDC event Apple has got something to show us. Apart from an inside look of iOS 5 there will also be the release of Mac OS X Lion.  A pity there will be no iPhone 5 or iPad 3 versions available for now exhibition – at least not yet. But another service announced on Apple website to be unveiled at the WWDC is the iCloud. iCloud.com is a domain name to a storage-as-a-cloud service owned by Swedish firm, Xcerion. Xcerion’s iCloud was renamed to CloudMe followed by its purchase by the company nearly a month ago in early April.

Xcerion then sold the domain a few days back to Apple for a price of $4.5 million. Apple made a statement about having finalized a new cloud-based storage system of wirelessly accessible media, and that it is in completion with record labels, music trademarks and publisher licenses being acquired just before the scheduled launch on 6th June.

The service named iCloud will allow users to store and synchronize data from their iDevices, Macs and content on desktop platforms in a dropbox-like feature online. The service is rumored to be an entirely music locker but may have other services as well. It will copy your iTunes playlists and personal data online for better usage. Benefits out of this technique would be that clunky cable sync is no longer needed and data can be uploaded, organized, streamed, saved and edited from anywhere at any time via EDGE, 4G/3G or Wi-Fi. Other things that can be synced through the bundled MobileMe service will include email, bookmarks, contacts, and events.

Then again a catch comes along – a snag for customers maybe – iCloud won’t be free like iTunes. The MobileMe and “mirror” iTunes bundle will cosot $99 a motnh

Apple will house facilities for this service in a $1 billion data center being built in Maiden, North Carolina. The Cupertino Company mentioned that updates for iTunes and MobileMe will be handled at the same location.

A bunch of the services users can utilize on iCloud.com domain, which will be owned by Xcerion until 2018, are;

iCloud desktop

  • Online folder storage and management supporting all file types
  • Sharing calendars and events with all friends and family
  • Microsoft Office Word 97-2003 document editor
  • A free iCloud online mail account
  • Downloads of files to desktop from iCloud Desktop
  • Provides To-Do lists for personal and group purposes
  • Share, stream, upload, edit and get updates to all their music and playlists
  • Access and play their playlists, mp3s, songs, and video from any platform
  • Online file sharing and sending using iCloud desktop
  • Organize all RSS feeds
  • Other software like Integrated Development Environment, API documentation and XML Editor
  • Online tools like calculator, notepad and archiver along with MobileMe.

iCloud iTunes mirror (Windows)

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