As CNET's Don Reisenger reported earlier today, Apple will unveil its long-awaited iCloud service next week at the Worldwide Developer's Conference.
Anyone else find it surprising that Apple announced something new before actually introducing it? That's rare. In any case, now that iCloud is official, more or less, we can start to speculate on what it will offer--and what we're wishing for.
I think there's little question iCloud will host your music library and stream it to the destination of your choice: iPhone, iPod, iPad, Apple TV, PC, etc.
But will you have to upload all your tunes, or will iCloud automatically recognize what's in your iTunes library and make those same songs available? That would be ideal, as uploading a big music library could literally take days.
If uploading is involved, how much storage space will Apple allot--and at what price? Amazon, of course, offers 5GB of Cloud Drive storage absolutely free, and you can boost that to 20GB (for one year) just by buying an MP3 album. (You can also stream from your Cloud Drive to your iOS device, though in a limited fashion for now.)
I have a sinking feeling Apple will charge something like $99 per year (as it does for MobileMe) for unlimited storage, and perhaps $49 per year for 20GB. Those are just guesses, of course, but I highly doubt iCloud will be iCheap. If we're sticking to my wish list, of course, it'll be free.
I'm also wishing for more than just music. Videos consume a lot of precious storage space; I'd like to be able to upload my files and stream them wherever, whenever. Likewise, let's hope the iCloud can rain documents and photos as well. Services like Dropbox can do this already, so there's no reason iCloud should be limited to music.
So those are my three big wishes for iCloud: no uploading required (for music, anyway), support for all forms of media, and a so-cheap-you'd-be-crazy-not-to price.
Your turn: what are you hoping to find in Apple's service-in-the-sky?