Apple Launches iCloud

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Apple CEO Steve Jobs today announced an online cloud storage service called iCloud.

iCloud allows users to store music, photos, apps, calendars, documents and more. And wirelessly pushes them to all devices ? automatically. As per Apple, it?s the easiest way to manage content.

iCloud represents a direct challenge to Google’s cloud-based offerings, which already use services like Gmail, Calendar, Picasa and Google Docs to let users see and edit the same document or photo across multiple devices. In addition, Google recently announced?Google Music and Amazon.com unveiled?Amazon Cloud Drive.

Everyone gets 5GB of free storage on Apple’s servers for mail, documents and backup purposes, while purchased music or books don’t count toward that limit.

As part of the service, Apple iTunes, the biggest music seller, will let users keep their existing music library in the cloud for $24.99 a year.

Jobs said that iCloud is not just a ?hard disk in the sky, it?s way more than that”. iCloud stores content in the cloud wirelessly and pushes it to all devices.

Apple?s new music feature, called iTunes Match, will scan every song in the user libraries and match it with a copy in the cloud. That means customers don?t have to upload all their music song by song. That?s a requirement on rival services.

Source: cnet.com, bloomberg.com

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