9 Comments

Summary:

Apple released a preview version of its upcoming iCloud web apps late Monday afternoon, alongside new pricing info for iCloud storage space upgrades. Here’s a look at how the iCloud.com contact and calendar management apps work, along with a peek inside other aspects of the beta.

icloud-login

Apple released a preview version of its upcoming iCloud web apps late Monday afternoon, alongside new pricing info for iCloud storage space upgrades. The iCloud apps currently appear to be available to some, but not all Apple ID and MobileMe account holders, as well as developers. I managed to access most of the new web apps, aside from Mail, and I liked what I saw so much I decided to share it in a screencast (note that there’s no sound in the video, so no need to adjust your computer’s volume):

As you can see in the video, the iCloud apps (running in the latest version of Safari on OS X Lion) look a lot like the redesigned Address Book and Calendar apps from Lion, as does the Mail app from screenshots I’ve seen. Apple’s decision to go for a unified look and feel between the web-based iCloud presence, Mac apps and iOS software is a great idea for encouraging adoption of cloud services among users new to the concept. One experience, no matter where you access from, really helps the learning curve and should help alleviate any concerns about privacy and security of access.

One other really nice feature about the iCloud.com beta: it appears to remember where you are when last you left off, even if you last logged in from a different computer, and delivers you right back to that same spot the next time you log in. It’s sort of like having Lion’s Auto Resume feature on the web.

Apple has definitely stepped up its game compared to MobileMe. Do you see yourself using iCloud on the web when it becomes available to the general public this September?

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  1. I am a current MobileMe user, and I use the web apps frequently. This video and other pics I’ve seen, don’t really show much UI difference than what there currently is. Mail & Calendar look almost identical to their MobileMe counterparts, just with a different color scheme. Contacts is the only one that’s different, but it looks terrible (the current MM Contacts web version is much easier to navigate). For me the bottom line, is that if the new iCloud performs as badly as MobileMe, I will switch to something else where the web app isn’t as slow. I am waiting to see…

    1. Who cares!!!! It’s free. And it’s in beta.

  2. MobileMe is / was terrible. So not a hard game to beat. For calendar, contacts, email, photos etc – all us tend to carry at least a smart phone with us. So (as long as you Sync via iTunes) what is the additional value in having the same information available directly on the web?

    I do see iCloud as a great way of not needing to manually Sync using iTunes. Using iCloud to Auto sync through iCloud for all devices makes full sense to me. For contacts, email, photos, music, calendar etc etc.

    1. Speak for yourself. I love(d) MobileMe. Terrible? Hardly. None of the nonsense I get trying to synch Google across all my platforms. I hope the “cloud” doesn’t screw up what I’ve become accustomed to.

      1. I totally agree! What is with all this “dissing” of MobileMe?? I never understood that. (Even Jobs did at the latest Keynote for iCloud).
        MobileMe is the simplest, most user-friendly, well-integrated & well-synced mail/contacts/calendar service I have used with Apple products. So I absolutely do not get why there are so many out there who find it “terrible”!! iDisk was the only feature of MobileMe that needed improvement, as it was snail-slow at uploading files (compared to Google Docs or Dropbox).
        I am completely devastated that Apple is axing MobileMe Gallery! Just a pitiful decision on their part. Again, THE MOST SEAMLESS photo storing & sharing option out there.
        I am nervous for the future of Apple…

      2. I totally agree! What is with all this “dissing” of MobileMe?? I never understood that. (Even Jobs did at the latest Keynote for iCloud).
        MobileMe is the simplest, most user-friendly, well-integrated & well-synced mail/contacts/calendar service I have used with Apple products. So I absolutely do not get why there are so many out there who find it “terrible”!! iDisk was the only feature of MobileMe that needed improvement, as it was snail-slow at uploading files (compared to Google Docs or Dropbox).
        Also, I am completely devastated that Apple is axing MobileMe Gallery! Just a pitiful decision on their part. Again, Gallery is/was the most seamless, simple way to store/share photos for an Apple user.

  3. After Mobile Me sent my contacts and password into cyber space forever, I quit Mobile Me. Before I even think about iCloud I’ll have to see several months of no complaints

  4. sunilpunjabi Friday, August 5, 2011

    Boy that was uneventful. Same thing as I have today with mobile me. What’s the big deal?

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