Shortly after Apple launched its cloud service, the iCloud, Microsoft said that it will bring its SkyDrive storage service to the Windows Phones with its next Mango update.
Windows Live SkyDrive is part of Microsoft’s Windows Live range of online services. It is a File hosting service that allows users to upload files to a cloud storage and then access them from a web browser. The service currently offers 25 GB of free personal storage, with individual files limited to 50 MB.
However, this service is not integrated with Windows Phones right now. Users will have to wait for the Mango update which will enable them to share photos on their SkyDrive through email, instant messages, text and they can even upload videos to the cloud.
Not that the service is problem free; the user interface is not simple and even cross platform support is missing at the moment. Even moving files between different folders is difficult. But users can stop worrying about the storage they have in their phones, since everything they can’t store in the phone can be stored in the cloud.
All the major mobile operating systems are pushing their teams towards cloud services on smartphones, but the Apple’s approach is slightly different. Microsoft seems to be viewing SkyDrive more like a hard disc in the cloud whereas Apple looks at the situation with an apps first perspective — the result is all the content which belongs to users is accessible on all their Apple devices.
In a way, iCloud seems to be a serious attempt at making users comfortable enough with the cloud so they can store their personal data in the cloud.
In music, Apple is the winner hands down since they almost own the online music business, with iTunes dominating it all the way. The Zune model is different, where Microsoft allows users to access all the music for free, though we can’t be sure about it (it’s not there in the Windows Phone blog post).
Rest of the files, such as photos, office documents, PDFs can be easily stored and accessed from SkyDrive — through all your mobile or desktop devices as well.