BYTE Wireless Radio Digs Into Apple WWDC: Special Report

Jobs says it will all just work, but iCloud and other announcements sound vague and, well, cloudy.
Here in San Francisco, the Apple World Wide Developer's Conference (WWDC) gave us an excuse to do a WWDC-only special edition on Lion OS X, iOS 5, and Apple's new iCloud service. This week, hosts Craig Johnston and I, along with teamBYTE's Fritz Nelson and Todd Moore, looked at Apple's slew of announcements and riffed hard on them. What's coming out, what wasn't announced, and what does it mean?
Without question, the iCloud announcement was the highlight, we all agreed. Apple's cloud service is available in fall, with the exception of a purchasing component that began shipping immediately. BYTE and InformationWeek took a look at that right out of the gate. Apple iCloud sounds fairly exciting the way Apple CEO Steve Jobs described it. But he left out so much detail … what is Apple saying and not saying? We ran through it all on the show.

Why didn't Apple announce streaming? Why no locker? There's a lot to talk regarding iTunes in the Cloud, and we compared it to similar music offerings from Amazon and Google. Google Music Beta looks to have some serious competitive juice, but is still in beta.

We also note that iCloud is about just making up for Apple's incredibly unimpressive and costly MobileMe fiasco. Even Jobs acknowledged that at the announcement, Nelson noted.

Added Moore, who by day develops the mobile White Noise app: "One of the things I really liked about this service is it's more than just music. The fact they are giving you first and foremost all the features of MobileMe for free now."

What's the prime feature of Apple's iCloud service? The ability to sync your music, photos, and other apps and data between multiple devices and computers.

Speculation continues on whether the iCloud sync features will "just work" as Steve Jobs said over and over during the presentation. The BYTE team can't wait to review iCloud, iOS 5, and the OS X Lion upgrade when it all comes out late summer--by which time we'll have unleashed BYTE for real.

Gina Smith is launch editor of BYTE, coming in July. Follow her on Twitter @ginasmith888 and BYTE @BYTE.

Security concerns give many companies pause as they consider migrating portions of their IT operations to cloud-based services. But you can stay safe in the cloud, as this Tech Center report explains. Download it now. (Free registration required.)

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