I can’t really see my cloud

I’m not someone who likes to stick with things that I know and I am happy to try new technologies and ways of working. This has extended naturally to the cloud because online storage and synchronisation is now dominating the world of mobile technology, but not everything is rosy in the garden up there.

I use an iPhone and an iMac so naturally there are some services that are somewhat tied to these devices such as iCloud and Apple Music, neither of which I use.

My first effort with Apple Music came to an abrupt halt after the free trial when I got confused by my music library seeming to disappear or at the very least become fragmented. I understand Apple products and iCloud well, but how on earth is the average user supposed to understand what is going on?

It’s the same with Photos. I have had to download all of my photos and put them in Dropbox just so I know they are safe. Dropbox feels safe to me whereas Apple’s cloud services don’t offer enough information for me to be 100% sure what is going on. By all accounts iCloud has improved a lot over the part year, but Apple’s minimalism does not offer much reassurance- give me a simple file structure and I am happy. Let things happen by magic and I worry. Presumably because magic is not for important things.

I can safely say that Apple’s cloud services are a mess purely because it is hard to know what is happening. In some ways services work unbelievably well; Photos backs everything up, iOS backup is faultless and so on, but I don’t really see what is happening, and if I trusted Apple with everything I would have to pay for the privilege, which to be fair is not poor value these days compared to the likes of Dropbox etc.

Maybe things will change. I suspect Apple Music will have a complete makeover to simplify the interface and that ‘matching’ will be tweaked to ensure that tracks are not replaced if there is any doubt at all. iCloud Drive may become more like Dropbox and work like a full file system and the likes of Photos will offer more transparency with regards to what is actually happening with our precious snaps.

Until that time, I remain wary of Apple’s cloud services.

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