Apple is working on a service called "iCloud" that lets users do many of the same things that they can now do with MobileMe (bookmarks, iCal, email, etc). It will be a cloud-based storage service, and has the potential to include the long-anticipated Apple music service.
Beta versions of Apple's iOS 5.0 and Mac OS X Lion are rumored to include the new iCloud service. Apple has allegedly bought the iCloud.com domain for a cool $4.5 million from the Swedish company Xcerion, and looks like it could unveil the new iCloud service at its annual developers conference, although this has not been confirmed by Apple (purchase has been confirmed, price and release date has not). It was originally reported by AppleInsider. This could allow Apple's MobileMe service to transition to a more current model under the iCloud name.
The iCloud.com domain name was being used by Linkoping for a cloud-based data storage service. There has been a lot of speculation of an Apple music service in the past, which ranged from a cloud-based storage locker to work with iTunes as a music subscription service. This would let iPhone and iPad users store music and files online, and access them from multiple devices. An Apple iCloud service could be a nice piece of that puzzle completed, and now it would take either Apple finalizing its licensing talks with the major labels or having the guts to launch without an agreement, as Amazon has done.
The latest word on licensing happened about a week ago, when it was widely reported that Apple had completed an agreement with Warner Music, and All Things Digital said that there was at least one other major label on board.
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