So Amazon has beat Apple to the punch as far as getting a cloud based music storage option to market. There’s no doubt people want the ability to store their gargantuan MP3 libraries in the cloud and be able to have access to their music 24/7 from any computer or smartphone, who wouldn’t?
Like anything Apple does, they are rarely first to market with bleeding edge technology. They instead prefer to observe, design and polish the hell out of their own offering until it’s perfect. Their key focus has always been design and usability. Design, as in how does this feel and really work.
What we know is Apple has a new data center which has been sitting and waiting for something epic like the launch of a newly refined MobileMe service. I have no doubt Apple will want to offer their own similar version to counter Amazon’s own cloud based music storage option for consumers. However this turns out, I have no doubt it will be polished, more usable and competitive in price to what Amazon is currently offering.
To think Apple is just sitting around twiddling their thumbs and ignoring this space is just foolish. For Apple, it’s slow and steady wins the race when it comes to new features. Just look at their track record with smartphones and tablets. There were plenty of pundits that thought they were crazy when they decided to get into the smartphone and tablet space. After all, companies like Microsoft had already failed many times over with their own tablet and sub-par mobile OS offerings.
Will I be jumping on the Cloud Player band wagon? Absolutely not. Their cloud player requires the abysmal Adobe Air runtime. Any Mac user knows how painful it is to use an Air app on OS X. Their “build once and run anywhere” ideology just doesn’t work on us geeks. We prefer thoughtfully and elegantly designed native Cocoa apps. If the app doesn’t look, feel and work like a native app designed by Apple itself, then it’s not something we are inclined to use.
To sum things up, I’m excited to see what Apple has in store for us later this year.