When it comes to wrangling the power of the cloud, few companies have done it as well as OnLive, the folks who have revolutionizing online gaming. Thankfully for us, they aren’t going to stop there. On Thursday, a new iPad app arrives called OnLive Desktop, which brings the full Windows 7 desktop experience to Cupertino’s beloved tablet -- and it’s free.
Apple’s first cloud service, iTools, was introduced in 2000 and was available for free. Then came MobileMe, which added powerful features like data syncing and online storage, so Apple bumped the price to $99 a year. But now Apple has reverted a bit, delivering MobileMe’s most useful services at no charge and rebranding it all as iCloud. And that’s not all—this new service links all of your devices with Apple’s North Carolina data centers to keep both your vital files and your iTunes Store purchases at your fingertips whenever you want them.
What’ll it be: Mac or PC? Consumers have their reasons for loving or hating both platforms. When expressed in online forums and the user comment sections of websites like Mac|Life or our sister site Maximum PC, these rational talking points act to chum the digital waters, attracting the most irritating of all predators: The Fanboy. With Macs users now capable of easily running Windows and OS X on the same computer, and Windows rig owners leveraging iTunes to keep their iPads and iPhones purring along, you’d think the hostilities would be settling down.
Unfortunately, there’s a new argument to be had, and it revolves around the issue of which company, Microsoft or Apple, provides a superior cloud computing experience: SkyDrive or iCloud. While we wear our pro-Apple leanings like a badge of honor, we wouldn’t be doing our readers a service by simply declaring iCloud the single greatest cloud computing and storage platform of all time. Instead, we present you with a blow-for-blow account of how the two of the web’s most prominent cloud computing platforms -- iCloud and SkyDrive -- stack up against one another.