The release of a Financial Times app that bypasses Apple’s App Store is a warning shot at the iPad maker’s quest to rule the high seas of digital publishing.
Launched just hours after Apple announced Newsstand, the iPad maker’s destination to access digital versions of mags and rags, FT made clear why it created the app:
Apple CEO Steve Jobs emerged from medical leave to launch an Internet-based service for consumers called the iCloud, which lets users play their music and get access to their data from any Apple device. Jobs walked briskly onstage after James Brown’s “I Got You (I Feel Good)” blasted over the sound system, but shared the spotlight with other Apple execs who showcased Apple’s enhancements to its PC operating system and mobile platform.
Jobs laid out his vision for the iCloud with the elminiation of MobileMe, a subscription-based collection of online services and software. Jobs said the iCloud will allow people to share book purchases, music and data in general, such as calendar items, across different devices, while backing up and updating information regularly.
Apple CEO Steve Jobs leaps back into the spotlight to unveil the iCloud, an online music storage and streaming service that investors hope will be the next source of growth for the maker of the popular iPhone and iPad mobile devices.
Reuters covers the event live, starting at 10:00 a.m. PT ( 1 p.m. ET).
Apple will pay between $100 million and $150 million to the four major music labels in order to get its music streaming service iCloud started, according to the New York Post.
Besides increasing the consumer appeal of future Apple gadgets because they’ll need less computer memory, the company’s iCloud service will make it more likely that subscribers will stick with Apple products, Robert Cyran writes. If users store data and programs remotely, devices blend together, Cyran argues.