AppleInsider has noticed that after serving up virtual storage to customers for just over two years, Amazon has finally added file syncing to its Cloud Drive service. What took so long to add this convenience given that competitors like Dropbox, Google and Microsoft have offered file sync for so long is anyone's guess at this point.
File sync requires the user to download and install software on a Windows PC, Mac and/or Android device that will automatically sync files stored in a local folder with the user's virtual locker. All you really need to do is drop a file into the shared folder, and it will appear on all devices. This can be rather handy when you want to move files to and from a smartphone or tablet.
But unlike its competitors, Amazon isn't giving away tons of storage for free even though the company is heavily rooted in cloud solutions for the enterprise space (which may be why it took so long to get a file sync app to the public). Users get 5 GB of space for free, but additional storage will acquire a dose of cash in Amazon's wallet: 20 GB for $10 per year, 50 GB for $25, 100 GB for $50, 200 GB for $100, 500 GB for $250 and 1 TB for $500 (all yearly fees).
Amazon's Cloud Player storage is separate. Users can upload 250 songs for free – albums and singles purchased through Amazon do not apply to this music locker cap. Customers wanting more space for their uploads can shell out $24.99 per year to store 250,000 tunes in the cloud.
Despite not having file sync capabilities until now, Amazon has managed to claim the third highest market share for cloud media services according to a Strategy Analytics report late last month. Apple's iTunes Match/iCloud combo took the leading spot with 27-percent, followed by Dropbox at 17-percent, Amazon Cloud Drive at 15-percent and Google Drive at 10-percent.
"The cloud's role in the race to win over consumers' digital media libraries has evolved from a value added service for digital content purchases to a feature-rich and increasingly device agnostic digital locker for music and movies," said Ed Barton, Strategy Analytics' Director of Digital Media.
To get started with Amazon's Cloud Drive, head here.