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Apple details iCloud features for Mac, iOS devices

updated 03:10 pm EDT, Mon June 6, 2011

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Apple co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs took to the stage today at WWDC to formally introduce the much-anticipated iCloud service. The executive suggests the system will "demote the PC and Mac" by moving the "digital hub, the center of your digital life," into the cloud. As expected, iCloud aims to improve and streamline sync capabilities across Apple's range of connected devices.

Devices such as iPhones, iPads or Macs will be able to communicate with the cloud at any time. If a user takes a picture on an iPhone, it is automatically uploaded to the cloud and then pushed to other devices without requiring any further input.

"Everything happens automatically and there's nothing new to learn," Jobs says. "It just all works."

The executive suggests all of the MobileMe apps have been rewritten "from the ground up" to focus on iCloud. The service enables changes to contacts to be pushed to all devices, while also enabling calendar entries to be shared with other users. Anyone with an @me.com mail account can will be able to read messages pushed to all devices, with inboxes and folders kept up-to-date.

The cloud will also be brought to the App Store, enabling app purchases to be automatically pushed to all of a user's supported devices. Other capabilities include books pushed through iBooks, along with automatic backups.

Aside from the existing products that have been redesigned for iCloud, the company also introduced several new utilities. Documents in the Cloud works with Pages, Numbers and Keynote documents created on various devices, while Photo Stream pushes photos to all devices. iTunes will also benefit from iCloud, enabling users to access music from the cloud rather than relying solely upon local storage.

Jobs admitted that MobileMe was not the company's "finest hour." In contrast to MobileMe's $99 annual subscription, the improved and expanded iCloud services will be available to all users for free.






by MacNN Staff

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Comments

    Comment buried. Show
  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -29

    "It just all works."

    Yeah, heard that one before. But I'm sure, this time, they've got all the kinks worked out before they take it live.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -26

    All well and good

    But:
    - How does this affect us Leopard or earlier users?
    - Does this mean yet another 'conversion' process?
    - What of 'security'?

    Comment buried. Show
  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -29

    and...

    They tout that you can backup all your 'purchased music, books, etc' to the cloud. Technically, I doubt you'll be backing it up. It's already there (since you bought it from them) so all they are doing is tying your purchase list to your device.

    BTW, Apple. I purchased most of my music. I just didn't purchase it from you. Stop calling it 'purchased music' What you mean is 'purchased from the iTMS'. It's a big difference, you know.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. facebook_Clarence

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Jun 2011

    -49

    .Mac

    Attempt #3?

    I like how they introduced iCloud like its a new service, but in reality it's just a repackaged MobiLame that's now free. Hopefully they'll refund all the money people wasted on that service.

    iOS 5 "Droid 2010" and Mc OS Loin - Hey at least now their mail client has conversation view. LOL. Full screen apps! WOW!

    Even the one more thing sucked. Lackluster show, Steve. Microsoft's E3 presentation was leaps and bounds better than what you offered.

  1. pairof9s

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +9

    RE: .Mac

    Ah...the Ballmer Youth!

    Gotta love the guys who suck at the teat of the fat man who waxes about a great new OS that no one is sure when it will be released...least of all him!!

    That's what makes Microsoft's shows exciting...to see how much c*** they talk about that'll never see the light of day...at least not for the next 2 years!!

    /

  1. richardh99

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +11

    All very nice but…

    …what about those of us in third world countries like the UK, who don't have enough or reliable enough bandwidth to use these services? (that's a question for the politicians, not for Apple…)

  1. chas_m

    Moderator

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +13

    Buried comments

    Make these threads better. Trolltudo et al never have anything of any value to say anyway, so why should their worthless posts be made public? Answer: they shouldn't. Thank you to all the people who voted to bury their posts, please keep up the good work and thank you for making the articles more enjoyable to read.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. facebook_Clarence

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Jun 2011

    -22

    Burial

    Go ahead and bury all you want. I know the truth hurts you iTrolls.

  1. jwdsail

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +5

    Was I the only one...

    Was I the only one that was perfectly happy w/ dotmac/mobileme?

    Was I the only one that never had issues w/ contact and calendar syncing between my iOS devices and all my Macs?

    Was I the only one that thought the 20GB storage was just about perfect? Sometimes slow, yes, but damn near perfect?

    Now.. a service that will be crippled to only work with one Mac I own (that can run Lion) and my work iPhone... Free, yes, but hardly an improvement for how I, and anyone in my family, used it..

    I'm underwhelmed... In fact, I'm so far from whelmed, that the light from whelmed may not reach me before iCloud is replaced by the next thing..

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +4

    Re: Buried comments

    You're so right. Who wants to read any actual questions about Apple's offerings. If you're not just lapping it up, it just isn't worth reading.

    And the questions still hold. How does iCloud affect Snow Leopard/Leopard/Tiger users?
    And what about those using non iOS 5.0 capable devices. Are they out of luck? And, do they lose services?

    Oh, right, who cares about those users. They're all using old macs and aren't spending the cash on new hardware or software, so no need to worry about supporting them.

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