SAN FRANCISCO — At WWDC 2014, Apple announced iCloud Drive, a Dropbox-like file system for storing your documents in the cloud. Each app you use with iCloud Drive gets its own folder inside the interface, which you can access through the Finder, and files are synced across OS X, iOS, and Windows. Even if you don’t use any iCloud-enabled Macs, you can just drop in files and folders to sync them across your devices.
Steve Jobs once vowed to destroy Dropbox with iCloud. That didn’t happen. Now, a few years later, Apple has finally launched its true Dropbox-killer. However, back in the age of Jobs, cloud syncing apps weren’t nearly as much of a commodity as they are today. Apple fans will love iCloud Drive for syncing files between their Apple devices, but Apple likely won’t get Dropbox and Google Drive-faithful to switch, especially since iCloud storage costs a lot more than storage on most competitors. Also, while iCloud Drive works on Windows, it remains to be seen if Apple will open up APIs so mobile developers on Android and/or Windows Phone could adopt the storage platform.
Until today, it had been a pretty quiet year for iCloud. In October, Apple killed off local syncing inside iTunes, leaving you to pick iCloud or another cloud services company like Google for contacts, calendars, and email. In September, Apple’s cloud storage and syncing solution saw an iOS 7-style redesign, and in August, Apple rolled out iWork for iCloud, an online collaboration platform that lets you edit documents with friends in real time. More importantly, Apple has been busy upgrading and tweaking iCloud behind the scenes to address mounting developer complaints about reliability and syncing issues.
Developing. Check out The Verge’s Apple WWDC Live Blog for the latest updates!