iCloud Overview Updated December 26, 2020


The best place for all your photos, files, and more.

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483 'iCloud' stories

May 2011 - December 2020

iCloud was launched in 2011 as the successor to MobileMe and is Apple’s current cloud service that allows iOS and Mac users to save and synchronize information. Apple includes 5GB of iCloud storage for free with all accounts and has paid options starting at $0.99/month for 50GB.

iCloud is built into every Apple device. That means all your stuff — photos, files, notes, and more — is safe, up to date, and available wherever you are. And it works automatically, so all you have to do is keep doing what you love. Everyone gets 5GB of free iCloud storage to start, and it’s easy to add more at any time.

What is iCloud?

iCloud solved a problem that we were facing in 2011. Originally, Apple pitched the Mac as the digital hub to our life. Our iPods (and then iPhones) would sync over a cable to transfer information. As we added iPads, it became a mess. Steve demoted the Mac back to just a device and made the “cloud” the center of our digital life. Using the service, users could sync all of their data over the air. As an example, a Keynote document edited on your Mac would automatically be up to date with the latest changes on your iPad or iPhone. iCloud also allowed you to back up your iOS device for an easy path to change devices without having to set everything up manually.

The problem with this original iCloud pitch is it didn’t cover all of our photos. We didn’t get that until iCloud Photos came in iOS 8. It didn’t cover iMessage, as that didn’t come until a few years ago with messages in the cloud. It didn’t cover all of our files, but only those in the iCloud folder stored inside of app folders. We didn’t get seamless syncing of files until Apple added Desktop and Document folder syncing a few years ago.

Over time, Apple has continued to add features to iCloud, and it’s turned out to be a really robust and reliable service. Users can sync files, photos, notes, reminders, and Safari bookmarks to their Mac, iPhone, iPad, and even Apple TV (photos).

iCloud Troubleshooting

If you’re having trouble using iCloud, you may want to make sure it isn’t affected by downtime. Check Apple’s iCloud Status page here.

How much does iCloud cost?

Pricing can change at anytime (view Apple’s latest pricing page), but here are the current rates for a few countries.

United States 50GB: $0.99 200GB: $2.99 2TB: $9.99

Canada  50GB: $1.29 200GB: $3.99 2TB: $12.99

United Kingdom 50GB: £0.79 200GB: £2.49 2TB: £6.99

European Union 50GB: 0.99 € 200GB: 2.99 € 2TB: 9.99 €

Read below for all of our coverage

iCloud Stories December 26, 2020

Apple’s system status webpage indicates that the company has resolved an outage affecting “iCloud Account and Sign In” services. Apple doesn’t indicate how widespread this outage was, but it does say that the issue was affecting users for 36 hours.

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iCloud Stories November 1, 2020

A variety of Apple’s iCloud services are experiencing outages this morning, including Calendar, Contacts, iCloud Drive, and more. Apple has confirmed the outages on its System status webpage.

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iCloud Stories September 17, 2020

When Apple announced its Apple One service bundles, it immediately raised a query for many: those with different Apple IDs for iCloud and Apple Music. Would the system cope with that situation, allowing them to take advantage of the savings?

Apple’s longest-serving employee, Chris Espinosa, has just confirmed that this will be fine …

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iCloud Stories August 24, 2020

Photography backup service ‘Ever’ will never work again due to iCloud and Google Photos competition

Despite Apple’s iCloud and Google Photos being two of the most popular choices for backing up photos, Ever was able to gain a following over the last seven years. Unfortunately, that time has come to an end as the service is shutting down with users’ photos and videos set to be deleted on August 31.

iCloud Stories July 24, 2020

Update: Apple says the issue is now fixed and users should be able to access iCloud again. You can read the original article below.

Some users are unable to access iCloud services this afternoon. The issue affects the iCloud website as well as backup tools, calendar, and photos. Apple has confirmed the outage, but there’s no timetable for a fix.

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iCloud Stories June 2, 2020

Update: Apple says the issue is now fixed and users should be able to access iCloud again.

iCloud seems to be down today for some users this evening, at least that’s what people are reporting on Twitter and Apple Support Community. Apple has confirmed the outage as well, but there is no timetable for a fix.

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