Apple’s iCloud is stunningly underwhelming

Apple unveiled its iCloud offering to the adoring masses recently and I have to say I am stunningly underwhelmed.

I am not a huge Apple fan but willingly acknowledge the company’s genius in design and marketing. The only Apple hardware I own is an iPod Nano which I love for its shape, weight and overall form.

The Nano experience, however, is marred by iTunes, probably one of the most hideous bits of software ever created. To call it bloatware is like describing Charles Manson as a little unhinged, but I digress.

The core behind iCloud is that you can store any form of digital media there and it syncs across all your devices so you can store your iTunes collection in the cloud and play it back via your iPad, netbook, smartphone – whatever. The same with photographs, documents, etc.

So why am I underwhelmed? Well, I have had those services for ages and it’s all through SugarSync. My MP3 collection is stored on SugarSync and I can stream any track through my netbook, smartphone or another desktop if I am away from my main PC.

Documents are stored there and ready for download at any moment I need them, same with my photographs and SafeWallet data. If I am out and about and take a photograph on my HTC Android phone SugarSync simply uploads it to a special folder on the server when I am within wi-fi range.

iCloud will be successful because it has a a huge fan base but for those who don’t want to go through the Cupertino company I recommend that you investigate SugarSync which has an impressive free 5gb of space for free. I have signed up to a premium deal to safeguard my MP3s and haven’t looked back since.

Kevin Tea is a journalist and marketing communications professional who has worked for some of the leading blue chip companies in the UK and Europe. In the 1990s he became interested in how emerging Internet-based technologies could change the way that people worked and became an administrator on the Telework Europa Forum on CompuServe. With other colleagues he took part in a four year European Commission sponsored project to look at the way that the Internet could benefit remote communities. His blog is a resource for SMEs who want to use cloud computing and Web 2.0 technologies.