Mark Bridge writes:
Apple’s evangelists will need to wait a little longer for the iPhone 5, it seems. Last night’s announcement of the Apple iPhone 4S by Apple CEO Tim Cook seems to have disappointed many people, although plenty of others had predicted the arrival of this faster and smarter sibling for the iPhone 4.
But that wasn’t the only news from Apple.
Apple also announced iCloud, a set of free cloud services that’ll be available from next Wednesday. ‘iTunes in the Cloud’, Photo Stream and Documents in the Cloud will work across iPhone, iPad and iPod touch devices, as well as being available on Macs and PCs. When a customer changes something on one device - whether music, photo, app, contact, calendar or document - it’ll be updated everywhere else automatically. Not earth-shattering but very neat nonetheless.
The ‘iTunes in the Cloud’ service will sync new music purchases and previously-purchased iTunes tracks across all devices. There’s also an optional chargeable service called iTunes Match that’ll make non-iTunes music available.
iCloud is free for up to 5GB of storage and backup, with additional storage available for a fee. iTunes Match will initially be a US-only service costing $24.99 a year.
On top of all this, Apple updated its iPod range as well. The new iPod touch will run iOS 5 and works with iCloud, while the new iPod nano music player also has more features.
Tim Cook ended last night’s presentation by emphasising that one of Apple’s strengths was the way its equipment worked together. As consumers acquire more and more digital information in more and more places, that’s a strength that’s going to become increasingly important.