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iCloud vs Dropbox

I’ve been using iOS 5 beta on my iPhone for the last week.

And aside from a few glitches, I’m gonna keep it. The tradeoffs are worth it.

The thing I’m most curious about right now is iCloud and where it’s going. 

The implementation in this beta is pretty smooth. Basically it just works in the background. Download an app, and it’s automatically in iCloud.

Buy a new song and it’s stored in iCloud and sent to all of your devices.

Take a photo on your iPhone, well, you get the idea. It’s seamless.

In iOS 5 beta, iCloud/Photostream doesn’t handle videos you capture on iPhone. That may come in the future but this shortcoming has brought to light the differences between iCloud and Dropbox

Dropbox handles video captured on the iphone. But here’s how I send that video to my dropbox. I open the Dropbox app. I tap Upload, then i goto albums and then I upload the video. A few moments later it’s on Dropbox.

Sounds complicated? Its not but it’s a lot more steps than sending stuff to iCloud.

Yet, I’d rather use Dropbox vs iCloud at this time. With Dropbox it gives you total control and the ability to use anywhere and everywhere. When Photostream, via iCloud, sends the pics I took on my iPhone to my iPad, it’s a broadcast stream. I can’t delete or change them for example.

And iCloud feels like a seprate universe from everything else in my life. As far as I can tell, I can’t point my Boxee to iCloud. I can’t send songs from iCloud to things like turntable.fm. I don’t think i can share my iCloud data with my friends or family.  

I hope Apple provides an easy API so that 3rd parties like Dropbox can automatically send data from native iPhone apps to Dropbox as easily as they send stuff to iCloud. I’m not sure if that will be solved with iCloud APIs or not.

But that would be a killer iOS 5 feature.