Cloud Drive and Cloud Player Excite

Amazon burst out of the blocks this week with the announcement of Cloud Drive and Cloud Player, aptly named cloud computing services. The more generic Cloud Drive gives a free 5GB of cloud storage (leverages the S3 service) intended to store your digital media but can also store any type of file. Cloud Drive can be used independently of Cloud Player which allows you via a browser on Windows, Mac or Android to play back your media, anywhere, anytime – online backup and playback for your media in one, all included in your Amazon account. The ZDNet article describes how this might raise copyright issues, but we shall see.

One report I read indicated these were US-only services but they worked well with my Amazon account from Australia. It was really simple to get started:

2011-03-30 SNAG-00 2011-03-30 SNAG-01

Of course Amazon now offer to deposit a copy of any media purchased from them into your Cloud Drive, but as of the time of writing we are not able to purchase media from Amazon so only our own media can be uploaded. To control the uploading process Amazon provides the MP3 Uploader desktop app to synchronise your media from Windows Media Player and iTunes (AAC is supported but not WMA). I have only about 800 songs in the supported formats so at 3.6 GB they fit well within the 5 GB limit. I am still uploaded and it appears I will need 10 hours due to my 1 Mbps cap on the upload on my Internet service.

This is a very significant advance by Amazon and is just the service I have been waiting for. When Cloud Player works on my iPhone my cup will be full.

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About Michael Rees
Academic in IT interested in Web 2.0 and social media

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