Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Amazon App Store and Cloud Drive

This week has been a busy one for Amazon.  First they unveiled the Amazon App Store for Android Devices, which will probably ignite a trademark suit between Amazon and Apple over the App Store mark.  For now the App Store is US only and AT&T phones appear to have an issue installing the Amazon app.  For those who can get it to work, the App Store is offering one free app a day.  This has seen mixed results with a few lame or overly intrusive apps being offered.  In general though, some of the most popular games and apps for Android have been included among the giveaways. Amazon has a way to test out some of the apps directly on their site before downloading.  It will be interesting to see how the Amazon market shapes up.

Amazon's second unveiling was for its Cloud Drive, offering a free 5GB to anyone with an Amazon account.  This is very similar to Dropbox, although without the same level of desktop integration that Dropbox has.  It shouldn't be much of a surprise as Dropbox runs off of Amazon's S3 cloud computing platform.  Amazon's service is particularly geared towards its music store with and isn't counting purchased MP3s towards its storage limit.  To further sweeten the pot, Amazon has also offered an upgrade to 20GB with the purchase of any album from their MP3 store.  Its a nice offer and will probably result in many people opting to keep the extra space in a year from now.

Like the App Store, the Cloud Drive is still a bit rough around the edges.  Amazon released a new version of it MP3 store app that integrates with the Cloud Drive but there is no desktop software or mobile app for accessing other files besides music.

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