Microsoft relaunches, revises SkyDrive, its Dropbox competitor

Summary:As officials have been hinting in recent weeks, Microsoft has relaunched and updated its Windows Live SkyDrive cloud storage service.

As officials have been hinting in recent weeks, Microsoft has relaunched and updated its Windows Live SkyDrive cloud storage service.

Microsoft is altering the SkyDrive user interface so that it is easier and quicker for users to see exactly what they've stored and how to access their files, photos and documents.

The updated SkyDrive -- which is basically Microsoft's free Dropbox competitor -- has been revised to incorporate HTML5 via the new SkyDrive Web site. For users accessing SkyDrive via Internet Explorer 9, Microsoft has made the new site pinnable. Microsoft also is doubling the limit for individual file sizes to 100 MB, while keeping the overall maximum for a single account to 25GB of stored files.

Microsoft is planning to make the SkyDrive update available starting later today (June 20), officials said.

I'm thinking that Microsoft is relaunching SkyDrive today because the company is ready to make "Mango," the next version of its Windows Phone operating system, available to testers, starting this week. Microsoft officials have said that improved SkyDrive integration will be one of the new features in Mango. With Mango, users will be able to share photos stored on SkyDrive via e-mail, text or instant messaging, and will be able to share videos immediately after shooting them, with the uploading happening in the background, officials noted again today.

Microsoft officials said earlier this month that more than 100 million people have used SkyDrive to store their personal information.

I am wondering when/how/if Microsoft is going to integrate Live Mesh, its consumer-focused synchronization service, and SkyDrive. Anyone have any guesses (educated or otherwise)?

Update: One of my Twitter buds, @spatacoli, notes that "in the new SkyDrive you can click on the link 'View Synched Folders' and it'll show the folders synched with Windows Live Mesh." And there it is!

(click on image above to enlarge)

Meanwhile, if you missed this chart comparing the different personal cloud-storage/sync services (SkyDrive, iCloud, Dropbox, Cloud Drive) from Pocket-Lint, it's worth checking out.

Topics: Windows, Enterprise Software, Hardware, Microsoft, Storage


Mary Jo Foley has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications, including ZDNet, eWeek and Baseline. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008). She also is the cohost of the "Windows Weekly" podcast on the TWiT network. Got a tip? Se... Full Bio

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