We all know the de facto internet filesharing and cloud storage tool until now has been Dropbox, but Microsoft has always had their own offering, SkyDrive. SkyDrive gave you 25GB of storage for free, which is a good deal more than Dropbox’s measly 3GB. Problem was, SkyDrive was not really available on anything else other than Windows (and Mac), and there was no mobile integration except with Windows Phone 7. Now Microsoft is starting to put SkyDrive into the devices people use every day, instead of only giving it to the Windows faithful.
From today SkyDrive is also available on iPhone, which is a major shift for Microsoft. “We realize that not everyone who relies on SkyDrive for sharing photos or accessing Office documents uses Windows Phone… yet. We have a long history of supporting iPhone customers with built-in support for Hotmail and with apps like Bing, Messenger, OneNote (with SkyDrive sync), and now Skype.”
“More generally, we believe you should have access to your personal content no matter which device you use. This is why we are excited to invest in HTML5—both on the web and on mobile—on http://skydrive.com.” iPhone users can access all of their cloud stored files, create folders, delete files and share links to folders, which fires off a invite using Mail.”
If you have not yet heard of SkyDrive, here are some of the features:
- Storage. Store thousands of photos and files. TheSkyDrive storage meter shows how much storage space you’ve used.
- Organization. Arrange your files in top-level folders and subfolders that you create.
- Control. Choose permissions for each top-level folder that you create. Keep your photos, files, and favourites in personal folders so you can keep them private; in shared folders so you can share them with your Windows Livenetwork, your extended network, and people on your contact list; or in public folders so that they can be viewed by anyone on the Internet.
- Convenience. Keep track of your favourite websites even when you aren’t using your own computer.
- Flexibility. Move, copy, delete, rename, and caption your photos and files after you upload them.
- Display. Photos saved as the JPG, JPEG, GIF, BMP, PNG, TIF, and TIFF file types display with thumbnail images, and can be viewed by other users on SkyDrive or in an online slide show, if they have the right permissions to view them.
- Sharing. Share links directly to your folders, files, and photos, or embed your photos and files in your blog or webpage. You can also let people know you’ve added their picture to SkyDrive by adding people tags.
In an interesting move, Microsoft did not release an iPad version of SkyDrive, which might be a further indication that an iOS version of Office is coming. Because of the lack of a file system on these devices, SkyDrive will have to include with Office for iOS.
But all in all, this is a great move by Microsoft…