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You are here: MacNN Forums > Software - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Applications > The future of iCloud: What feature should Apple add?

The future of iCloud: What feature should Apple add?
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Insider
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Oct 25, 2011, 08:46 PM
 
Now that iDisk is being phased out there is no good way to share large files under iCloud. Considering that email is not efficient for sending files from one user to another, this seems like an obvious area where iCloud could come to the rescue.

Why not incorporate an integrated application that could be accessed from the dock or menubar? An "iCloud Share" app where you could drop a file that would pop up a contextual menu asking the user if they would like to share via Mail, public link or iCloud (sending the file to any iCloud user). The iCloud Share app could then automatically zip the file, create a message in Mail with the link, send the file directly to an external iCloud user or copy the public link to the clipboard.

I believe this would be a wildly useful feature and I can't see anything stopping Apple from adding this functionality.

What feature would you like to see next in iCloud?
( Last edited by Insider; Oct 25, 2011 at 08:56 PM. )
     
besson3c
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Oct 25, 2011, 11:13 PM
 
How would it integrate with Windows or even Android based devices? Why would these users use this feature rather than Dropbox or the like?

Don't get me wrong, I think the feature would be useful too, but I don't know about wildly useful.


I would like to see the maturation of iCloud APIs that are open to the public and don't require to pay to be a developer so that more applications can utilize iCloud, including web applications. I think focusing on making iCloud a rich web service rather than just some convenient features for Mac users would be great. I think Apple beginning to compete in this area (against Google) would be a healthy direction for the company and would help strengthen its Mac ecosystem in terms of integration and cool things you can do with a web service like this.

Examples:

- document sharing with non-iCloud users, something like Google Docs integrated with iWork
- backup and restore functionality
- version control of files that works in collaboration, something like Github for Mac users (i.e. not just focused on developers)
- a Google Calendar clone

I'm not saying that Apple should strive towards producing each of these examples, but this is the sort of thing I have in mind.
     
Insider  (op)
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Oct 26, 2011, 12:44 AM
 
It doesn't need to integrate with Windows or Android beyond the ability to send files to those users via data in the iCloud. As you said, those platforms already have Dropbox. Apple is obviously not looking to improve competing platforms nor should they be. Hence the requirement to buy an Apple device to get an iCloud account. This is consistent with their focus on developing the best possible products within their own ecosystem.

I think that in order for iCloud to be truly useful to users on Apple devices, it needs to provide the kind of advanced functionality that is already available and that users clearly want. But they should do it in a way that is completely seamless with the user experience provided by their closed-loop device infrastructure. This would ensure that iCloud achieves the best balance between elegant simplicity and amazing functionality.
     
besson3c
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Oct 26, 2011, 12:48 AM
 
Originally Posted by Insider View Post
It doesn't need to integrate with Windows or Android beyond the ability to send files to those users via data in the iCloud. As you said, those platforms already have Dropbox. Apple is obviously not looking to improve competing platforms nor should they be. Hence the requirement to buy an Apple device to get an iCloud account. This is consistent with their focus on developing the best possible products within their own ecosystem.
Normally I would agree with stuff like mapping, searching, AI/speech recognition, etc. but the way I see it the better Apple can get at building web/cloud services, the better this serves Apple. If you are going to build a web service, why confine it this way arbitrarily?
     
besson3c
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Oct 26, 2011, 12:54 AM
 
Actually, Netflix's stock is tanking. Maybe iCloud could be the backend for a Netflix replacement, providing this is a viable business strategy?
     
TETENAL
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Oct 26, 2011, 10:09 AM
 
I want the photo gallery back.
     
Jonesy
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Oct 28, 2011, 03:40 AM
 
I want keychain sync kept. The ability to enter passwords for one website on one mac and to have this automatically appear on others was so handy and I will miss it in iCloud.

I also used iDisk to share large files, although the implementation was poor. Uploading through iDisk on Mac was slower than through the web interface and you had to use the web interface to share it. I would love to see a way to keep this.

Another vote for photo galleries too.
     
ibook_steve
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Oct 28, 2011, 01:40 PM
 
Photo galleries. Or at least guest access to my Photo Stream so people can see photos anywhere.

More control over Photo Stream. I like it, but I should be able to choose what goes up, when it comes down, and how my bandwidth is consumed with all that uploading.

Document backup support for apps other than iLife, aka Office. As much as I'd love to use iLife for work, I simply can't. Being able to work on a PP on my Mac and then being able to easily access it from a PC at work would be awesome.

Steve
Celebrating 10 years and 4000 posts on MacNN!
     
Spheric Harlot
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Oct 28, 2011, 02:29 PM
 
iDisk.

(One that works reliably, please, even for files larger than 2.5 GB)
     
Will53
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Oct 28, 2011, 03:54 PM
 
Well, what I and many others thought would come with iCloud, was a seamless and effortless syncing using iWork apps across ALL devices. To our disappointment, that is not what happened.
It works as advertised on all iOS-devices, but the "solution" for iWork running on a Mac is not what I would call neither effortless nor seamless. Instead, you have to log on to iCloud.com on your browser and there you can upload or download your document.
I am not sure, but it seems like it doesn't work like this even, if you do not have an iOS-device. Then you are left out in the cold, obviously.
So, before they add something, I hope they will at least fix this.

There are those who claim that this was clearly stated, that it would only work smoothly with iOS-devices, but although that might be true, if you go nit-picking the details about what have been said and demonstrated, I would say that the general impression one was left with was that it would just work across all devices, be it Mac OS X or iOS.

Aside from that, I would of course welcome a storage like iDisk. It behaved poorly - slow - in the beginning, but it evolved to become quite handy for storing and sharing files. Some backup-solution with more control as to what to back up would be nice, too. And yes, I would gladly pay for it.
     
Atheist
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Oct 28, 2011, 04:36 PM
 
iDisk and Keychain Syncing... I'm very pissed they got rid of those. Sometimes Apple just confounds me.
     
   
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