iCloud: Present Situation
The ‘i’ revolution never ceases to impress. Just when it was being thought that Apple had stagnated with no fresh, eye catching application or service to be launched, iCloud was released amid frenzied excitement and anticipation. The Apple iCloud service was unveiled on 6th June, 2011 at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) by the late legendary CEO Steve Jobs. Apple might have delayed their entry into the cloud computing foray but their iCloud service certainly proved to be an instant hit with its impact being swift and instantaneous. The services, at a first glance may seem monotonous as those provided by similar ilk but are in-fact quite different and unique as compared with others. Apple, with the release of iCloud has admittedly outdone its previous subscription based service, MobileMe which was launched in 2000. This proves that iCloud is not some fancy, perked up version of its predecessor but rather a newer, innovative and an extremely well designed cloud computing model. New subscribers for MobileMe are longer accepted and services are expected to be terminated within a year. Apple themselves are encouraging its MobileMe subscribers to migrate to iCloud computing service before the tentative termination date.
To explain the basic essence of iCloud in layman terminology, it can be considered as a hub or a central storage space to which a user can connect any of his Apple devices without going through the cumbersome process of manually synchronizing all the devices. The cloud acts as the user’s very own personal drive which is virtually connected and in sync with all the Apple devices the user owns. The advent of iCloud definitely packed a punch and drew in huge amounts of subscribers with its exciting new features and services. The biggest customer attraction is the iCloud service being available free of cost unlike the previous versions and services floated by Apple which were quite expensive. Also, Apple have worked out and fine tuned the minor flaws before releasing iCloud for the general public which means that it is free of any glitches or errors that its predecessors were prone to.
In a survey conducted by RBC Capital Markets, iCloud has already reached an estimated of 150 million users. In the poll conducted by RBC Capital Markets, a total of 1500 iPhone users were asked whether they would avail the services provided by iCloud. An overwhelmingly 76% of the users responded with a positive answer. RBC also concluded that Apple will introduce more services and features in the iCloud after gaining momentum in terms of consumer attention and the highly favorable response after the release of iCloud. The number of users are expected to rise and there maybe a sudden surge in the number of users when the previous subscription based Apple service, MobileMe ceases its operations. Overall, the release of iCloud has definitely announced the presence of Apple in the cloud computing world with a boom with competitors running the risk of being totally wiped out in terms of cloud computing services.
By Chuck Weaver