Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

Summary: In just a few hours, Apple CEO Steve Jobs is going to unveil iCloud at WWDC 2011. If the rumors turn out to be true, here's why I'm already keen on signing up.

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TOPICS: Apple, Cloud, iOS, iPhone
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In just a few hours, Apple CEO Steve Jobs is going to unveil iCloud at the Worldwide Developers Conference 2011 in San Francisco. There have been a number of rumors since the official (and brief) announcement of its existence last week. If the rumors turn out to be true, here's why I'm already keen on signing up.

ZDNet's Live Analysis of the WWDC 2011 Keynote starts at 10 am PT / 1pm ET.

One rumor that swirled was that Apple will be bundling free iCloud features (if not the whole service, whatever it might be) with Mac OS X Lion, which will also be given a full introduction (not just a teaser) on Monday. Most Apple followers are expecting (or at least hoping) for a sub-$50 upgrade fee via the Mac App Store much like Snow Leopard before it.

Additionally, CNet News’ Greg Sandoval broke the news that Apple signed Universal Music to the iCloud, meaning that the Cupertino, Calif.-based company now has the "rights to offer recordings from all of the major labels."

iCloud is predicted to be the successor to the less-than-successful MobileMe cloud-based service, but a music service in the cloud is expected to be a huge part of that. On Friday, the big story was that Apple is going to offer iCloud subscriptions for only $25 per year, which is a huge drop from the current $99 price tag for a one-year membership. That seems like a big disparity, but the numbers show that Apple will still make a profit off this nonetheless.

At this point, I'm rather locked into the Apple brand with an iPhone, a MacBook Pro and an iPad. However, I've also started to be drawn more into the Sony brand as I have a PlayStation 3 and a Music Unlimited monthly subscription. I'm also somewhat intrigued by Sony's Internet TV with Google. (What can I say? I like pretty gadgets that cost more than they should.)

I signed up with Music Unlimited because it has six million songs from the major labels (including Sony itself, which has many of the best artists on retainer) that can be synced with my computer for only $9 per month. It also has a very lovely interface with preloaded radio stations and playlist creation support. (It's also the only significant reason I stayed with the PlayStation Network after the hacking crisis in the last two months.)

But which is a better deal: $9 per month or $25 per year? The latter of which would (most likely) also sync all of my information between my iOS devices and my computer wirelessly? It doesn't really seem like a difficult choice.

But again, I can't make a final decision without seeing what iCloud is all about first. All of these rumors are speculative until confirmed by Apple, which they haven't been. I could very well change my mind tomorrow morning depending on the price and whether or not the service looks useful to me at all. I haven't like every Apple product in the past (namely MobileMe), so it's quite possible I'll still feel the same way about iCloud.

Be sure to stay tuned to ZDNet's live analysis as we all learn more from Jobs' keynote as it happens.

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Topics: Apple, Cloud, iOS, iPhone

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107 comments
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  • Let me guess?

    the low monthly price?
    bstringy
    • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

      @bstringy
      As long as it doesn't have leprosy like iTunes does, that will bring much joy to the hearts ot tens of millions of end users.
      neil.postlethwaite
    • Rachel King

      = iNaive

      Rachel you (and millions of others) will buy/use anything made by Apple with a lower case "i" in front of the name.
      Pretty gullible.
      mikroland
      • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

        @mikroland<br><br>And you (and hundreds of others) will continue to bash anything Apple does, sight unseen.
        Info-Dave
      • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

        @mikroland And the i stands for "I, Steve Jobs, not you".
        snoop0x7b
      • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

        @mikroland Well said.

        All this is presented as if Apple has just invented music streaming. Good grief.
        dourscot
      • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

        @mikroland And ABAers like yourself will of course bash Apple without knowing anything about what is going on... imagine that. However there must be a reason why millions buy/use things made by Apple (with or without the "i" in front of the name)...

        @dourscot - first nice user name... and fitting if this is the kind of post you will make here. Apple did not and is not claiming to have invented streaming music or cloud services despite your attempt to call them out on it. What they ARE doing is - if the rumors are true - introducing a cloud service that one does NOT have to upload their own music to but rather unlocks the music they already "own" (i.e. have listening rights to) and is offering a subscription streaming service for the music one does not "own".

        Nice try on spreading the FUD you two...
        athynz
      • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

        @mikroland

        More 'pretty smart' rather than 'pretty gullible', in my opinion.
        dickseng@...
      • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

        Put down the kool aid and step back.
        john_gillespie@...
  • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

    Just remember every silver lining has a great big black thunder cloud behind it.

    I also vaguely remember when I thought music was important. Still, each to their own hobby ;-)
    tonymcs@...
    • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

      @tonymcs@... So, you don't listen to music? I feel sorry for you...
      gandalas
      • Message has been deleted.

        jmwells21
    • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

      @tonymcs@... You mean every silver lining has a touch of grey.
      snoop0x7b
    • Sloppy

      @tonymcs
      Yeah uh, fail.
      If the lining had a cloud BEHIND it, it wouldn't be a lining. Do you even think before you let your fingers touch your keyboard?
      DeusXMachina
      • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

        @DeusXMachina I think he was paraphrasing the Grateful Dead song "Touch of Grey"... there's a lyric that goes "every silver linings got a touch of grey".
        athynz
      • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

        @athynz<br><br>Maybe so. Or maybe he is just (attempting) to repeat the hackneyed "every cloud has a silver lining". Either way, the point is that clouds are in front of their linings, not behind them. Considering the intellectual veracity of his continued posting history, this level of incompetence is hardly surprising.<br><br>For someone who hates Apple as much as he does, by his own admission, he sure spends an inordinate amount of time trolling these boards. He barely surfaces at all on Windows' blogs. Guess he ran out of orifices.
        DeusXMachina
  • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

    Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud....because it's my job to know and fully understand these things.
    AdonisSMU
  • Google TV???

    Wow. Just don't. It's one of the most terrible products ever released. Walk into any Best Buy and you'll see countless open box Google TV's that customers returned after realizing that it did about 20% of what it's supposed to do, and as poorly as possible at that. I can't believe anyone is even still talking about that disaster of an idea.
    FreeFallin11
    • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

      @FreeFallin11
      Actually, if it's such a failure, then why are most online services trying to block it? Mainly because they're scared of it.
      daforce
      • RE: Why I might sign up for Apple's iCloud

        @daforce Haven't used it so won't claim it's a failure but the fact that so many are blocking it could be why some consider it a failure. If the greatest radio ever was produced but most stations were about to block you from receiving their broadcasts with it would it not be a failure at what it was supposed to do? It wouldn't mean the device itself was a failure, it just failed to provide what it advertised.
        non-biased