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How to stay synced with iCloud

Apple's new iCloud service syncs your music, books, and apps wirelessly among all your iOS devices. Sharon Vaknin shows you how.

Finally, Apple has given users a way to sync their purchased music, apps, and books wirelessly. With iCloud, whatever you download on one device--your iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, or computer--can be set to automatically download on all other devices.

For example, when you purchase a song from iTunes using your computer, it'll immediately be downloaded onto your iPad also. Or, if you purchase a book on your iPhone, it'll be downloaded to your computer and your iPad as well.

More iCloud features, including calendar syncing and Photo Stream, will launch in the fall. Until then, you can use the iCloud beta for free to sync your music, apps, and books. Here's how:

Note: iCloud syncing is not yet available for Verizon subscribers.

Now playing: Watch this: Stay synced with iCloud

Enable "automatic downloading" on your iOS devices.
Decide which devices you'd like to automatically download new songs, apps, and books purchased with your iTunes account. Make sure they are up to date with the latest iOS software.

On your iPod Touch, iPad, or iPhone: Go to Settings > Store, and select the type of content you want automatically downloaded.

On your computer: Download and install the latest version of iTunes. Go to iTunes > Preferences > Store, and select the type of content you want automatically downloaded.

Click the cloud button to download the song, book, or app to your iOS device.

Manage past purchases and view your cloud.
With this feature, you can download previously purchased apps, songs, and books to your iOS devices (and your computer) at no extra charge.

On your computer: open iTunes and head to iTunes Store > Purchased (in the left sidebar). Here, you can view all the content you have purchased, redownload items, and view which purchased content is not already on your computer.

On your iOS device (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch): you'll need to manage each type of content (music, apps, and books) in its respective app. No update is needed to access the iCloud feature on your device--Apple has added a new Purchased tab over-the-air to your Apple device.

Books: Go to iBooks > Store > Purchased.

Music: Go to iTunes > Purchased.

Apps: Go to App Store > Updates > Purchased. (Exception: on the iPad you'll find the new Purchased button in the row at the bottom.)