Apple seems to have opened up the iCloud Beta on iCloud.com and the login page is nearly identical to a leak from the days before the original iCloud announcement. Apple has launched iCloud.com for developers with access to Mail, Contacts, Calendar, Find My iPhone, and iWork, when developers sign in they are prompted to move their MobileMe account to iCloud…………..
Apple has commenced its first public developer beta test for its new iCloud services, announced the first Web apps and set additional storage pricing for its much-improved cloud-based services suite. Announced at WWDC 2011 in in June, iCloud replaces the Mobile Me service. This isn’t the first Internet service from Apple. In the past it offered iTools in 2000 .Mac in 2002 and MobileMe in 2008. Apple last night switched on the iCloud.com domain, but only for developer members of MobileMe. Behind the wall, you’ll get access to online Web-app versions of the Mail, Contacts and Calendar and Find my iPhone apps. iCloud will offer cloud-based storage and access to our music, video, and photos, along with documents and much more. It will integrate tightly with enabled apps, including Numbers, Pages and Keynote on both Mac and iOS devices. Apple has added support for these apps within iCloud, though they only lead to splash pages at present. The Web apps on offer are full-screen. Mail and Calendar look very like the version of the programs that ship with the Lion OS, though notification boxes come direct from iOS. You return to the main menu (which becomes akin to a virtual desktop) using a cloud icon on the top left of each application window. iCloud stores your email, calendars, and contacts and automatically pushes them to all your devices. So you can switch from one device to another and still go about business as usual.
When you set up mail you get a free me.com email account. Mail is then pushed to all of your devices; similarly, iCloud keeps your Calendar and Contacts detail up-to-date across all your devices with a Web app available for those times you are without access to a device of your own. iCloud makes sure all your devices have the same apps. iCloud also backs up your information. So if something happens, it can help save the day. Apple has already made Apps available to all your devices via the ‘Purchased’ box within the iTunes Store. If an app you own isn’t on your device, you can download it immediately for free. Your books will also be made available this way. All your devices will also be backed-up in the iCloud. f you have the same app on more than one device, iCloud can automatically keep your documents up to date across all your devices. Developers will now be able to test their apps for iCloud support. At present only Apple‘s own apps will automatically sync with the cloud-based service, but this will change now the beta has opened up to permit developer testing, though the 64k data limit Apple is imposing on developers in terms of syncing across devices may limit some realizations, at least for the present.
With iCloud, when you take a photo on one device, it automatically appears on all your other devices. No sending. Your photos are just there. Apple will make 1,000 of your own images available via Photo Stream. These images do not count against your data capacity limits (5GB in the free service). With iCloud, the music you purchase in iTunes appears automatically on all your devices. You can also download your past iTunes purchases. Where you want, when you want. Set to be available only in the US at first, pending licensing deals, the jewel in the crown of iCloud will be the $24.99/year iTunes Match feature which will allow users to store ripped songs, or songs that aren’t bought from the iTunes store, without having to re-upload every song. This service will also act as a virtual ‘amnesty’ for file-sharers, and also presumably as a gateway into legitimate music services. In an Apple TV update released yesterday, Apple enabled on-demand downloading of previously-acquired TV shows to Apple TVs, which now boast an additional Purchased TV shows and Vimeo support. iTunes 11 will reportedly offer deep support for iCloud elements your level scores in games will be synced between devices. Apple also revealed the cost of the new service. As expected, the 5GB service is free, but if you need more data, you can pay for it. iCloud Photo Stream, iOS apps, music and TV shows you buy from iTunes/the App Store do not count against your 5GB of free storage, so users can upgrade as and when they wish, wherever they are in the world:
- 10GB includes 15GB total iCloud storage at $20 per year
- 20GB includes 25GB total iCloud storage at $40 per year
- 50GB includes 55GB total iCloud storage at $100 per year
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