What is iCloud?
iCloud is a cloud service provided by Apple, available to all iOS users. The iCloud service was launched in 2011 and has since served millions of users worldwide, and fast approaching the 1 billion users mark.
On one hand, this service is a cloud storage service. It allows iOS users to store files, such as documents, videos and music, safely in the cloud using the corresponding iCloud apps for their device. The data is safely stored on remote cloud servers and can be downloaded to various devices such as iOS devices, macOS devices and even Windows. Furthermore it can be used as a backup device, where user data is stored in iCloud. The service takes away the hassle of performing regular manual backups for its users.
iCloud is also a cloud computing service, branching into lots of additional services available for iOS users. An important one is the ability to locate an lost iOS device. The iCloud service runs on cloud servers located in many datacenters all over the world, for best service and good download/upload speed. It is served by a combination of top cloud service providers. The iCloud service has replaced the old MobileMe service from the same company when it was introduced.
iCloud allows user to sync their contacts, email, calendar and more. In this way, if a device is damaged or lost, the user does not lose their precious contacts and reminders etc. It safeguards important documents by syncing it to the cloud automatically.
Users can also get an email account through the service, but this part is optional and signup is possible using a different, non-iCloud email address. The mail service uses IMAP and can also be opened via web browser to the main service website iCloud.com.
The cloud computing service also provides a feature named “Find my Friends”, which later has been built-into iOS 9/10 and became delete-able with iOS 11. From this version on the app can be reinstalled from iOS App Store. This feature allows users to share their location with friends or family, and also to view other friends' locations for example while traveling.
Additional services are available such as Activation Lock, iWork web-based document editing services and more. The product is continuously developed and improved, for the benefit of all iOS users worldwide.
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