I’m not about to pretend to know how much it’s going to cost, when it’s going to be available, or even precisely what it’s going to do. The one thing I do know however, is that it had better knock the socks off of Google and Amazon’s offerings. Of course, I’m talking about Apple’s much-rumored […]
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My Thoughts On Apple’s Rumored Cloud Music Service

CloudComputing-150x150.jpgI’m not about to pretend to know how much it’s going to cost, when it’s going to be available, or even precisely what it’s going to do. The one thing I do know however, is that it had better knock the socks off of Google and Amazon’s offerings. Of course, I’m talking about Apple’s much-rumored cloud-based music streaming service.

Just yesterday Google entered this market with something they’re calling “cloud beta” and from early reviews, it’s not that great at the moment, at least not in fit and finish. On the other hand, Amazon’s Cloud Drive service seems to be doing pretty well, and you can’t beat the price of free, even if it has limited storage data. Oh, and it now works with iOS.

So, what could Apple bring to the table? Well, if I were doing it, and it was no doubt costly to set up the back end, but I would make this a free feature integrated directly into iOS, and for that matter, every Mac. The idea here is that a new feature like this would drive hardware sales, which is where Apple makes the big bucks.

Secondly, Apple needs to allow for a way to store content that you didn’t buy from iTunes. If they think they can build this service off the idea that each item bought on iTunes, then becomes accessible to you from the cloud, they’re missing the point. They’re needs to be a blending of both storage of content you bought elsewhere, and the stuff you bought from iTunes.

Lastly, and regardless of whatever form this service takes, the implementation has to be better than Google’s or Amazon’s. Right now either of those companies offers control through really poorly designed web apps. In some form or another, Apple needs to make this service a joy to use. Preferably, the service would be invisible after initial setup, and indistinguishable from the OS itself. Almost like a Dropbox like feature for music.

As I hinted at from the beginning. There are also questions right now. How will it work? Cost? Limits? Etc. Apple will have to answer all of this, and soon, to stay relevant.

At that, it seems Apple has the blessings of the Music labels, which Google and Amazon do not, and it seems that they’re going to launch the service before either of those services really become mature. I suspect we’ll hear all about Apple’s cloud-based initiatives come this June at the company’s World Wide Developers Conference (June 6th-10th).

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