Revamped MobileMe to feature streaming from individual computers, not the cloud?

Mon, Feb 14, 2011

News, Rumors

In conjunction with a report about a new and perhaps smaller iPhone came word via the WSJ that Apple was also planning to revamp its MobileMe service. This smaller form factor iPhone is reportedly half the size of the iPhone 4, a feat made possible by removing the device’s storage. That said, the Journal noted that Apple’s new MobileMe service might become free and would work to stream an owner’s content from the cloud down to their device.

In the wake of that report, well-connected Apple blogger Jim Darlymple puts forth a more plausible scenario than Apple housing and streaming an inordinate amount of content to millions of iPhone owners.

Is Apple going to give us all 100GB of cloud storage to host our music, backups and sync data? That seems a bit much to me. Here’s what I think will happen with Apple’s new MobileMe service.

Instead of trying to provide everyone with cloud storage, I believe Apple will use MobileMe as the brain of the cloud service. The actual storage will be on our individual machines. In effect, in the cloud.

Darlymple postulates a scenario where a user with a multitude of iOS devices that are all registered with MobileMe will all be able to tap into the cloud and share data with each other.

“If I’m away from my house,” Darlymple writes, “and I want to listen to a song from my home iTunes account, I can do that. Every song in my library will be listed on my iPhone.”

In effect, what Apple’s doing is setting up a streaming service that you host. By using advanced caching and MobileMe as the brain behind the operation, you will always have access to your media.

I also believe that MobileMe will be more than about media. You will also be able to share and sync files and documents in much the same way. If there is a document on your home system that you need, it will always be available to you. Tap on it, and it downloads to your iPhone or iPad.

Lastly, Darlymple discounts the notion that Apple would make MobileMe an entirely free service as it would make sense for Apple to charge for the main features of the cloud-based solution.



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