Apple recently announced a new product called iCloud, coming this fall. Apple has come out with quite a few nifty gadgets over the years, including the Macbook, iPod Touch, iPhone and the latest iPad. Each of these devices come equipped with a variety of useful Apple products, such as iCalendar, iTunes, iPhotos and an App Store, stocked with countless applications waiting for installation. It is not uncommon for many Apple fanboys and fangirls to purchase and use more than one of these Apple devices, if not all of them.
Each Apple device can serve a different function. If a person has the resources, why not buy a Macbook for home, an iPad for portability, and an iPhone for more discrete portability? A problem can come into play when the user starts storing different information on different devices.
In order to get all of the songs, documents and photos on ever device, the user must manage and sync the data periodically, which can be a big problem. iCloud aims to solve this problem by creating a virtual space, call the cloud, that receives new information stored on the device, and pushes the new data out to all the other devices registered to that user.
It Just Works
Apple products receive a lot of heat from Windows and Linux users, for their alleged lack of customizability. Some people coming from Windows and Linux have a hard time adjusting to an operating system that doesn't let you adjust every feature. Apple tends to focus less on providing infinite variables to their products, and more on making them easy to use. Apple products just work, and iCloud is no exception.
iCloud frees users from having to spend any time or energy managing what is stored on which device. Syncing Apple devices, doesn't take up a whole lot of time. It does add up, however, especially when the occasional bug in the syncing process pops up. iCloud's primary function and purpose is to give Apple users back the time they were spending on syncing. Once iCloud is set up, there is nothing left for the user to manage or worry about regarding syncing. iCloud does all the work.
Coming This Fall
Apple is rolling out the iCloud along with their latest operating system, OS5, during the Fall of 2011. iCloud will come free with the purchase of the new operating system. The free version also comes with 5GB of free storage space. That may not sound like a lot, but most of the data that is sent to iCloud doesn't count against the space. Data from iPhoto, iTunes, purchased apps, books and iCalendar do not use up any of the allotted 5GB. What does count against the free storage are documents, settings, account information, mail, Camera Roll and other app data.
No specific release date is posted on the Apple website, but beta testing is in progress. Those interested can sign up to be notified when the iCloud is available, by providing an email address on the Apple website, apple.com.