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110 Things You Need to Know About iCloud

It’s FreeThe nicest thing about iCloud is that the first 5GB of storage is free to each user. The cloud is an important, and possibly scary, new frontier for consumers and charging them to access a cloud-based platform might not work. Offering it for free is a smart move.

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It Is a Storage SolutioniCloud users can store up to 5GB of data on the service for free, and can pay extra if they want more capacity. iCloud might not be the most ideal cloud-storage solution on the market, but it’s a nice one.

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Syncing Reigns SupremeWhether it’s music, applications, iBooks, or documents, users will find that iCloud automatically syncs their content across their devices. It might seem like a simple addition, but considering how difficult (and annoying) it has been to add content to multiple devices, the service’s syncing feature is a welcome addition.

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It Works With PCsUnlike so many of its products, Apple will let Windows users who want to sync content across multiple platforms access iCloud.

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It Has Enterprise FunctionsWhile built for consumers, iCloud has some enterprise-focused features. For one, users can keep their calendars synced across multiple devices and even input events from iCloud.com. Moreover, the service comes with a “Find My iPhone” function to help companies find lost devices and either remotely lock or wipe a device. Not bad.

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It’s Tied to the Apple IDApple’s decision to tie iCloud to users’ Apple IDs isn’t a surprise, but it is a smart move. Apple IDs have all the information about us, including our app and music purchases, and more. That’s important. If Apple required a new log-in, iCloud simply wouldn’t be as appealing.

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A Better Way to Keep Up-to-Date?The iCloud calendar function lets users manage, add or delete events across devices in real time. The service might not be the favorite for Remember the Milk users, but for all others, it’s a fine option

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Simplicity Reigns SupremeOne of the key hallmarks of Apple’s products over the years has been simplicity and ease of use. And iCloud is no different. As soon as users boot it up for the first time, they should have no trouble making their way around the platform.

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It’s Fully Integrated Into iOS 5In order for iCloud to work, users must be running iOS 5. Granted, that’s not a good thing for iOS 4 users, but most who can are expected to upgrade. iOS 5 is a fine operating system and one that is made all the better because of its support for Apple’s cloud-based service.

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There Is Room For GrowthThe latest rumors suggest Apple is in talks with Hollywood studios to bring movie streaming to iCloud. There’s speculation that music streaming will be available on the service too. There is a significant amount of room for growth with iCloud, and it should be quite interesting to see where it goes from here.