iCloud Streamlines File Synchronization

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2011-06-08 Print this article Print


5. A disaster-recovery option?

According to Apple, it will allow iCloud users to back up 5GB of content to iCloud at no additional charge. Best of all, music, apps and books purchased from Apple do not count in that limit. Granted, 5GB of storage isn't a ton of space for a backup utility and other firms offer more capacity for that function, but if users employ iCloud to take care of their most important files and folders, it might just become a worthwhile disaster-recovery option.

6. Photo Stream seems like a winner

As avid photographers know all too well after a long day of shooting, getting all those photos to different devices and computers can be a pain. Apple has set out to solve that issue with the help of Photo Stream, a platform that automatically uploads photos and pushes them to all the other devices connected to the user's iCloud account. Considering the importance of digital photography both inside the iOS ecosystem and outside of it, Photo Stream might just be a huge selling point for many users.

7. Apple's hands-off approach

During his keynote address, Apple CEO Steve Jobs continued to reference iCloud by saying that "it just works." The idea behind iCloud is that users will be able to have as little interaction with the platform as possible but still be provided with all the content they want on all the devices they have. It's an interesting concept that stands in stark contrast to many cloud-based solutions in the wild that require a decidedly hands-on approach. iCloud's ease of use could prove integral to its success.

8. iWork users rejoice

Though it might not be Office, Apple's iWork platform is still used by many consumers across the world. There is little doubt iWork users have been looking for a simple, easy way to transfer files created in that suite across different devices. With the help of iCloud, users can do just that. Plus, any changes they make to a document will be automatically pushed to copies on other devices. It's a smart idea on Apple's part that should bring some more users to iCloud.

9. The syncing capabilities

Much of the above items relate to one simple fact about iCloud: All the devices are networked to an account and seamlessly synced, so a user shouldn't ever be left without a document, file, song or other piece of content transferred through iCloud. Syncing is integral to the experience of iCloud, and Apple seems to understand that fully. If the company can make it work as well as it says it can, users should be quite happy with iCloud's syncing capabilities.

10. More is coming

Though iCloud might not be the perfect solution for every user out there, make no mistake that Apple is planning much more with its offering. As with all other services, Apple delivered many, but not all, of the features users were looking for in iCloud. In future updates, users might expect music streaming, movie and TV downloads, and other features that aren't available in iCloud. So, it might be a good time for users to hold out hope for additional iCloud features. But they can start using iCloud this fall. After all, if the good things are coming, why wait to use a service? 

Don Reisinger is a freelance technology columnist. He started writing about technology for Ziff-Davis' Gearlog.com. Since then, he has written extremely popular columns for CNET.com, Computerworld, InformationWeek, and others. He has appeared numerous times on national television to share his expertise with viewers. You can follow his every move at http://twitter.com/donreisinger.

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