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Briefly: Google voice search in Chrome, Amazon Cloud Drive in Canada

05/22, 1:54pm

Google adds voice search to home page in Chrome update

Google has updated Chrome to enable voice search, among other additions. Chrome version 27 enables conversational search through the Google homepage, providing a clickable microphone to start it off, and then switching to a larger Google Now-style mic logo. The update, spotted by Searchengineland, also provides a new API for Chrome Store developers, 14 security fixes, and a 5-percent speed boost to page loads.

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Amazon launches Cloud Drive Photos app for iOS with 5GB

05/10, 10:00pm

Offers paid additional storage, cross-platform compatibility

Amazon has launched an iOS version of its Cloud Drive Photos app (free), which gives users 5GB in free storage space for backing up or offloading photos taking up too much room on their own devices. Depending on the format of the pictures, the Amazon Cloud Drive Photos storage locker can hold up to thousands of photos, and the company offers additional storage space for a fee starting with 20GB of additional space for $10 per year. The iPhone-oriented app also allows sharing of photos to Facebook, Twitter and email.

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Life in the clouds: how to decide what to store and where

04/24, 9:00am

Tips to stop juggling gigabytes and start using the cloud

We live in a world positively soaked in data nowadays. Fortunately, the capacity to store that data has gotten bigger in volume, smaller in physical size, and cheaper per gigabyte as time progresses. Gone are the days where you'd have to lug a Zip disk around (remember those?) or stick your iPod into disk mode. At worst, you're carrying a USB drive with you -- though really, you should be relying on the cloud for by now. The issue is figuring out just what you're going to be keeping up there.

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Unofficial Amazon Cloud Drive app disappears from App Store

11/01, 10:50am

Music industry blamed

An unofficial app that streamed music from Amazon Cloud Drive has been removed from the App Store, says developer James Clancey of Interactive Innovative Solutions. aMusic was reportedly pulled because of legal concerns involving the music industry. Clancey claims that the removal from the App Store is temporary, but has no date for when the app will be back.

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Amazon rolls unlimited Cloud Player music space, iPad hooks

07/06, 8:00pm

Amazon fights iTunes Match with new Cloud Player

Amazon upped the ante against Apple's iTunes Match late Wednesday with major upgrades to Cloud Player and its first mobile support beyond Android. Those who get a paid Cloud Drive subscription will, for a "limited time," get unlimited space for any AAC- or MP3-encoded music on Cloud Player, regardless of the source. Any user can also store Amazon MP3 purchases from before the service's March launch for free rather than just those they bought afterwards.

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Amazon Cloud Player starts working on iOS web browsers

05/07, 8:00pm

Amazon Cloud Player enabled for iOS on web

Amazon in an unannounced step extended an olive branch to iPad and iPhone users by fixing Cloud Player access over the web. Having previously been denied access, iOS users can now play songs from Safari much as they would on the desktop. It works with multiple tracks and will even pause properly for an incoming phone call.

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Amazon hopes to one-up iTunes with 69-cent hit songs

04/29, 2:25pm

Amazon drops current hits to 69 cents in rivalry

Amazon possibly raised the stakes in US music on Friday with a major shift in its 69-cent section in Amazon MP3. Instead of selling mostly older or niche songs, the store is currently selling songs that are or were very recently hits, including singles from Dr. Dre and Talib Kweli. No signs existed that it was a temporary sale.

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Amazon EC2 outage cripples range of websites

04/21, 10:40pm

Services down for the majority of Thursday

Amazon's EC2 cloud services have been hit with a significant outage that was first announced after 4:30am EDT Thursday and remained unresolved later in the evening. The problems have affected a number of websites, including Foursquare and Reddit. The problems appear to be limited to Amazon's northern Virginia data center, rather than a widespread issue affecting all of the company's centers.

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Amazon, labels to hash out Cloud Drive terms on Thursday

04/14, 8:20am

Reuters reports Amazon to engage in private talks

Amazon is reported to be meeting with angry music label bosses to hash out a deal on its new streaming Cloud Drive digital music locker service. Parties at the table are expected to include Universal Music, Sony Music, Warner and EMI. Amazon had maintained at launch that its existing licence to sell music downloads permitted it to allow customers to store and stream music purchased through its site to mobile and other devices. However, record labels contend that the Cloud Drive service should be subject to a music streaming licence.

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mSpot bumps free storage to 5GB amid competition from Amazon

03/30, 9:50pm

Company offers cloud music service

Cloud entertainment company mSpot has announced that its free storage option has been increased to 5GB. The change appears to be directly related to Amazon's introduction of a competing service, Cloud Drive, that offers a 5GB storage locker for a user's music collection, along with a player interface for remote streaming.

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Amazon intros Cloud Drive and Cloud Player [U]

03/29, 7:00pm

Now official for web, Android devices

[Update: Sony, other media companies upset by early announcement] Amazon in the night unveiled its rumored media locker and beat Apple and Google in the process. Cloud Drive gives users a way to store a minimum of 5GB of files on the web and access them from any Mac or PC. The company has a unique tie-in with Amazon MP3: any songs bought through the music store are saved to the Cloud Drive and available either for backup or for remote streaming without counting towards the quota.

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