Apple iCloud Web Site Goes Live, Cloud Service Prices Revealed


Apple iCloud was launched into beta Tuesday when the company's the iCloud.com Web site went live and revealed the pricing for its cloud services.

Currently limited to a select number of developers, iCloud.com will be the online home for data and content stored in the Apple iCloud, Apple's new cloud computing service which is expected to launch into general availability this fall; users will have access to cloud apps through the iCloud portal. Early screenshots show the cloud apps available include Mail, Contacts, Calendar, Find My iPhone and iWork.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs unveiled Apple iCloud at WWDC 2011 in June. iCloud, the cornerstone of Apple's cloud strategy, lets users store documents, contacts, calendars, e-mail, media and other content and access that data from up to 10 different devices including iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, Mac or PC.

iCloud is Apple's bid to go toe-to-toe against a host of iCloud competitors that have established similar cloud offerings.

Along with launching the developer beta of iCloud.com, Apple also revealed iCloud pricing, according to screenshots published by 9to5 Mac. According to those screenshots, iCloud users will get 5 GB of free cloud storage. Additional storage will cost roughly $2 per GB per year. For example, adding 10 GB is $20 annually, adding 20 GB is $40 per year and adding 50 GB will run $100 for a year.

Extra storage capacity in Apple iCloud can be purchased through iOS 5, the latest iPhone and iPad operating system. Apple has noted that images in Photo Stream, a new cloud photo service, won't count against iCloud storage totals.

Apple iCloud will replace Apple's previous cloud service, MobileMe. MobileMe users will be transitioned to iCloud, and Apple has said MobileMe will shut down as of June 30, 2012.

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