Google Drive, the long-awaited cloud storage service from Google, has just launched. Everyone gets 5 GB of storage for free with their Google account, with more storage available for purchase at surprisingly cheap rates (for example, you can upgrade to 25 GB storage for $2.49 per month.) Google Drive is currently available on the web, PC, Mac, and Android devices. iOS apps for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad are coming soon.
Read More | Google Drive
Dropbox just upped the ante for its users who want to share the goodness of the service with friends. Now, when you refer friends to sign up for a free Dropbox cloud storage account, you get 500 MB of extra space added to your account, with a maximum 16 GB of space up for grabs if you refer 32 new users. If you're a Dropbox Pro user, you'll get 1 GB for each referral, up to 32 GB. If you don't already have a Dropbox account, you can sign up for free, starting out with 2 GB of storage.
Read More | Dropbox
Apple has just announced that it's closing down the iWork.com beta in light of the fact that iCloud has become the company's de facto standard for cloud storage and sharing. It's certainly interesting, since iCloud doesn't yet have all the features that iWork.com has, namely talking about document storage and sharing, as well as the ability to download the stored document in a variety of formats on the fly. Maybe that'll be changing soon? iWork.com users have until July 31, 2012 before the service is shuttered. Full text of the email that Apple sent to iWork.com users after the break.
During its Q1 2012 earnings call where Apple announced a record-breaking holiday quarter, CEO Tim Cook also announced that there are now 85 million iCloud accounts. What's impressive there is that iCloud is just three months old, coming in as a replacement for the aging MobileMe, so that's a tremendously positive number as it pertains to user adoption. In fact, that 85 million number is 50 million more than iPhone 4S units sold.
The move, Microsoft said in a blog post, comes as people increasingly need access to files on-the-go.
"As devices proliferate, having a great experience on the Web is only one piece of a pretty complex puzzle," Microsoft's Mike Torres wrote. "People are choosing where to put their files based on how portable and accessible they are across the various devices they use; therefore, it's critical that we continue to extend the SkyDrive experience to the devices you use every day."
To that end, the most recent version of Windows Phone, known as Mango, included deep integration with SkyDrive via the Pictures and Office hubs, allowing for the sharing of photos via text, email, or IM, for example.
But users wanted more, Torres said. "Many still want the full SkyDrive experience from Windows Phone, including tasks like browsing their entire SkyDrive, sharing links to folders or files, deleting files, and creating folders." As a result, phones running Windows Phone 7.5 can now download the SkyDrive app from the Windows Phone Marketplace and do just that.
For those on iOS, the same app was also released in the App Store. See the video above for more.
The next major Xbox 360 dashboard update happens on December 6th, and we’ve got a look at all the new changes and additions in this episode of Bleeding Edge TV. The Fall 2011 Xbox 360 Dashboard Update is the official name of this release, and we show you the update process, and then walk you through the new interface. We give you a look at new features like Bing, Cloud Storage for games and profiles, the new Social, Games, Movies, and Music channels, and more. Expect good things from Microsoft's latest update, including full Kinect integration. This is a big update that brings another big redesign to the Xbox 360, similar to what they did a couple years ago with the New Xbox Experience. Things are a lot more flat...even boxy. It's somewhat similar to the Metro UI that you’d find on Windows Phone 7 devices or Windows 8, and the synergy is understandable…plus, it makes things a lot more user-friendly as it pertains to Kinect.
Big thank you to GoToMeeting and JackThreads for sponsoring the show - be sure to check them out! As for JackThreads, we've got exclusive invite codes that give you $5 to use towards anything you'd like.
Google's Jamie Rosenberg, director of digital content for Android, said Google Music is an expansion of Google Music Beta, introduced earlier this year, making it a "full end-to-end service."
"It's about the cloud, about the Web and about mobile," he said.
Google Music, accessible via music.google.com, is open to everyone in the U.S. now on the Web and will roll out to mobile users in the coming days. Users can store and stream up to 20,000 songs in the Google cloud for free, and add any selections they don't have by buying them from the Google Music store.
Google Music will allow users to share songs with friends, who will be able to play that song in its entirety once.
Google said it has sealed deals with more than 1,000 music labels, including Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, and EMI, as well as indie labels, like those from Merlin. In all, Google promised access to 13 million tracks, 8 million of which are available now.
The Kindle Keyboard Software Update, Version 3.3, adds four key features:
- The ability to store personal documents to your Kindle, for viewing anytime and on any supported Kindle app or device.
- Whipersync for personal documents. This automatically synchronizes your last page read, bookmarks and annotations for personal documents, not including PDFs.
- Kindle users can now purchase, view, and redeem AmazonLocal deals straight from their Kindles.
- A Voice Guide shortcut: you can now quickly turn on Voice Guide, which reads aloud menu options and content listings, by holding the Shift key and pressing Spacebar.
What's not new: The Xbox 360 is likely getting a Fall update that contains significant graphical updates and a few new features, like enchanted Kinect motion and voice navigation, Bing integration, and, ultimately, live television streaming.
What is new: A freshly leaked video that shows just how some of the different components of the new Xbox interface are shaping up.
An unknown source has leaked a full video that shows off a lot of the simple menu navigation and new user interface elements allegedly arriving on November 15 as a part of Microsft's fall Xbox 360 dashboard update. What's missing, however, are all the juicy bits: A preview of the voice-activated search, for example, or any kind of mention of an integrated live TV service or promised social connectivity, like the ability to fire off news of one's achievements to a connected Facebook account.
Cloud Engines on Thursday announced Pogoplug Mobile, the first mobile-focused hardware product.
Pogoplug Mobile is a small, black box onto which you can attach a USB drive or SD memory card. Once you do, you can see all the files and media stored on the devices and access them remotely or share them by activating an account at my.pogoplug.com.
Users can stream unlimited amounts of multimedia files—including photos, music, and videos—from their home network to their iPhones and Android-based smartphones, as well as the iPad. Apple iOS users receive the benefit of instant streaming of media libraries. For Android users, Pogoplug Mobile provides a unified streaming and sharing service and enables automatic backup of all multimedia files and other content. Cloud Engines said this was a "kind of iCloud for Android users, but in your home."
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