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Amazon cloud photos app hits iOS, syncs with camera roll

New Cloud Drive Photos app from Amazon can sync up a user's camera roll to Amazon's cloud.

Amazon's new Cloud Photos app.
Amazon's new Cloud Photos app.

Amazon's got a new app for iOS that gives users of Apple devices a way to view and sync up with photos they have stored on Amazon's Cloud Drive, including photos they've taken on other devices.

Every time the app (iTunes) is opened up, it can tap into a user's camera roll and automatically sync up photos people have taken. Amazon is the latest company, along with Facebook, to offer such software, and the app works over both Wi-Fi and cellular connections.

Other features include the option to share stored photos on Twitter and Facebook, as well as through e-mail -- all functions that users would find if they were viewing photos natively in iOS.

The free app joins Amazon's nearly year-old cloud player and is part of the company's larger efforts to get people to use its various online services. Amazon put out a nearly identical version of the software on Android devices in April.

The software can serve as a companion, or even an alternative to Photo Stream, a built-in feature in Apple's most recent iOS versions, which syncs up the most recent 1,000 photos. In Amazon's case, users are limited instead by how much storage they have with the company -- something that can be viewed from inside the app, though not upgraded.

Apple previously had its own gallery software for iOS that accessed stored files from the company's MobileMe service. That service was shut down after Apple transitioned to iCloud, though the company continues to let people host photos on iCloud through shared Photo Streams and specially set up iPhoto galleries.

Click to enlarge.
Click to enlarge. CNET