iCloud

Apple today introduced iCloud, a cloud-based storage service, iOS 5, for mobiles, and OSX Lion for desktops and laptops.

iOS 5, for the iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch, has more than 200 new features. OSX Lion for desktops and laptops has lots that’s new with plenty of new features. It is coming in July to the Mac App Store for $29.99.

Apple’s iCloud has a set of free new services that work seamlessly with applications on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac or PC to automatically and wirelessly store your content in iCloud and automatically and wirelessly push it to all your devices.

“Today it is a real hassle and very frustrating to keep all your information and content up-to-date across all your devices,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “iCloud keeps your important information and content up to date across all your devices. It’s integrated into our apps you don’t even need to think about it—it all just works.”

The free iCloud services include:

  • Former MobileMe services. Contacts, Calendar and Mail have been re-architected and rewritten to work seamlessly with iCloud.
  • The App Store and iBookstore. Now download purchased iOS apps and books to all your devices, not just the device they were purchased on. In addition, the App Store and iBookstore now let you see your purchase history, and can download any apps and books to any iOS device (up to 10 devices) at no additional cost.
  • iCloud Backup. Automatically and securely backs up your iOS devices to iCloud daily over Wi-Fi when you charge your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. Backed up content includes purchased music, apps and books, Camera Roll (photos and videos), device settings and app data.
  • iCloud Storage. Seamlessly stores all documents created using iCloud Storage APIs, and automatically pushes them to all your devices. When you change a document on any device, iCloud automatically pushes the changes to all your devices. Users get up to 5GB of free storage for their mail, documents and backup. The storage for music, apps and books purchased from Apple, and the storage required by Photo Stream doesn’t count towards this 5GB total.
  • iCloud’s Photo Stream. Automatically uploads the photos you take or import on any of your devices and wirelessly pushes them to all your devices and computers. So you can use your iPhone to take a dozen photos of your friends during the afternoon baseball game, and they will be ready to share with the entire group on your iPad (or even Apple TV®) when you return home.
  • iTunes in the Cloud. Lets you download your previously purchased iTunes music to all your iOS devices at no additional cost, and new music purchases can be downloaded automatically to all your devices. In addition, music not purchased from iTunes can replace your music with a 256 kbps AAC DRM-free version if Apple can match it to the over 18 million songs in the iTunes Store.

iTunes Match will be available this fall for a $24.99 annual fee. Apple today is releasing a free beta version of iTunes in the Cloud, without iTunes Match, for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users running iOS 4.3. iTunes in the Cloud will support all iPhones that iOS 5 supports this fall. Apple is ready to ramp iCloud in its three data centers, including the third recently completed in Maiden, NC.

iTunes in the Cloud is available today in the US and requires iTunes 10.3 and iOS 4.3.3. Automatic download of apps and books is available today.

Posted by Sam Churchill on .

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