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  • Free MobileMe for Cloud-Based Media Sync?


    Some persistent rumors about Apple making a free version of its MobileMe service have been boosted recently as users have noticed changes in how accounts are described in the Account Status preferences pane. Combined with some hints provided at Steve Jobs at D8 this week, there's speculation that Apple is getting ready to launch free MobileMe at the Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco next week.

    MobileMe, Apple's $99 per year service, allows users to sync their data across multiple devices and offers services like MobileMe Gallery for photos and Back to My Mac for remote access. The price has been a limiting factor in Apple's ability to sell subscriptions, and rumors have been floating around in recent weeks that Apple has been preparing a free membership option, perhaps with limited data storage and without some services like Find My iPhone and Find my iPad that would be an inducement for users to upgrade to full accounts. Steve Jobs made one of his typically vague pronouncements at the D8 conference hosted by AllThingsD this week. In his talk with Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher, Jobs observed that users "want to share... content that [they] bought amongst [their] various devices." While, as Jobs said, "you can do that today with a wire," he noted that "you can't do that without a wire," and stated that "we need to work harder on that. We need to do better. Anytime soon? We're working on it."

    So some are speculating that what they are "working on" is MobileMe. Reports on 9to5Mac and Electronista have confirmed what some users have already noticed: the Account Type field on the Account Status MobileMe screen now shows "Full member" where it used to say "Individual" or "Family Pack." It's always risky to impute too much significance to minor changes like this, but with Apple's mysterious North Carolina data center coming up to full operation without any explanation yet from Cupertino on what it's going to be used for, any changes to Apple's cloud-based offerings are going to draw attention.

    And with the war with Google heating up steadily, Apple may be taking the fight to its rival by challenging it in the field where it has a dominant advantage: the cloud.

    image via MacRumors forums
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Free MobileMe for Cloud-Based Media Sync? started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 12 Comments
    1. Windmeel's Avatar
      Windmeel -
      Is it at all possible its showing Full Member as opposed to whatever the free trial members are called? Doesn't Mobile Me have like a 3 month trial or something? I've never bothered with it but it's the first thing that came to mind.
    1. Bluprint's Avatar
      Bluprint -
      MobileMe is awesome. I have email, storage, iPhone/iPad finder, iWeb, back to my mac, auto sync (mail, contacts, bookmarks, notes and calendar), and a gallery page to upload pictures. If you have more than one idevice then it's really worth it.
    1. n00neimp0rtant's Avatar
      n00neimp0rtant -
      The only problem I have with MobileMe is the whole subscription thing. I could switch to a Nexus One at any moment because my relationship with Apple has so soured over the years. I wouldn't want to pay $99 for a service that I end up cancelling soon afterwards.
    1. wolverinemarky's Avatar
      wolverinemarky -
      30 dollar price tag i would pay but not a 100 dollars they should lower the price

      i will definitely look forward to a free version of it or even a reduce price version
    1. decke's Avatar
      decke -
      That'd be great.
    1. mortopher's Avatar
      mortopher -
      Outside of the find my iphone and ipad part, what are the main advantages it has over googles array of features? I've read on some of the features (lack of 2 alerts for appointments on Google calendars compard to MoMe) but I don't recall finding anything significant that would make me pay 100 for it when Google has pretty much an identical suite for free.
    1. Myque's Avatar
      Myque -
      Without find my Iphone/Ipad it is pretty much like any other email, still I wonder if I can use my old unactivated account free if they put a free option.
    1. Atomi's Avatar
      Atomi -
      http://homepage.mac.com/cjrtools/ebo...mm-account.jpg - jep its real deal. Maybe we hear something in WWDC on monday? Maybe whole mobileme is gonna change and not just a mail app(beta).
    1. MetallicaFan1991's Avatar
      MetallicaFan1991 -
      I don't get this screenshot at all, how does it prove free MobileMe??

      Why are the details censored, the picture on iClarified showed all of it including the name.
    1. southfrisco's Avatar
      southfrisco -
      Quote Originally Posted by wolverinemarky View Post
      30 dollar price tag i would pay but not a 100 dollars they should lower the price

      i will definitely look forward to a free version of it or even a reduce price version
      Well the price is for a year of service with online storage (20GB for the $99 package). While some will still think that is overpriced I use my MobileMe account more than my Google email now.

      Why?

      Sync contacts and calendars OTA is instant and seamless. Of course it would be since it is Apple offering MobileMe and the iPhone. I used my Google account and GoogleSync early on. When I received my free trial with MobileMe in 2008 I tried it.

      The sync is huge for me as my calendar and contacts change on a daily/weekly basis. With GoogleSync I had issues with duplicate entries, deletions that would still show up, contact image degradation with the more edits you make, slow syncing etc. Now I don't own an Android device so the sync might be better there but I use an iPhone. The sync is not that great with Google.

      I still prefer the features of Google Calendar to MobileMe and their slim offering but the sync is so good on the MobileMe side (changes go both ways iPhone syncs to MobileMe or MobileMe syncs to iPhone) that it is a must have for me personally.

      Also I use the 20GB storage quite a bit with photos and pdf files. I use the free Dropbox 2GB account which is great for small things but the presentation through MobileMe and other apps such as iDisk/Gallery/GoodReader is much better than the Dropbox app and the minimalistic UI.

      MobileMe isn't for everyone but for me and what I use it for, the $8.25/mo price tag is small change.
    1. whereswaldo's Avatar
      whereswaldo -
      mobileme f'ed up my computer
    1. Shinner23's Avatar
      Shinner23 -
      Don't pay $99 for it, you can get it on Amazon or Ebay for $45. Just get the MobileMe in the box and take out the code. That's all you need. However, let's see what Jobs has up his sleeves next week.