Sunday, July 3, 2011

Google Music BETA - Store Your Music in the Cloud!

The terms "the cloud" and "cloud computing" have been thrown around a LOT lately. What does it all mean? Using someone else's servers to do the work that you would normally have your local computer do. A good example of this would be google docs. If you aren't familiar with Google Docs, it is basically free office software (a word processor, spreadsheet program, and something? else...) that all run from your google account. These programs aren't installed on your local computer (Like Microsoft Office) and, while you have the option of storing the files you create on your local computer, the default is to keep them on Google's servers. This is cloud computing...
Why the term cloud? Most likely because your information could be / is not just on one computer but possibly spread across a myriad of machines. These machines could be virtual or actual, but they are all part of whatever network Google has setup to handle this kind of work.

What is so great about cloud computing? Well, in a "pure cloud" environment, you would no longer be tied to your local office computer. In a perfect world, the specs (or computing power) of your local machine wouldn't really matter all that much either. As long as you have a fast internet connection (the most vital component which makes or breaks this whole deal) all of the rest of the computing would be done "in the cloud." Honestly, I don't feel we are quite there yet... However, cloud storage, has become much more of a reality. Case-in-point: Google Music...

Amazon already offered a form of cloud storage some time back. You can still sign up for this service and get a free 5gb of space that follows you wherever you have a computer and an internet connection. Google, through its current beta, is offering 50 GB!! of free storage AND (this is the cool part) it is currently optimized for "streaming" your music connection to your android powered device.

I recently opened up a tablet sales business ( I sell really nice, economical, off brand Android powered devices.  A hard combination to find. The one thing that these devices due tend to be limited in is internal storage space. You can always add a 32 GB MicroSD card, but I have 40 GB of audio files : ). The beauty of Google Music, is that your entire audio collection can be stored in that 50 GB of free Google Server space and accessed wherever you can get an internet connection. Hence, your device could theoretically have an unlimited amount of space (if you are willing to pay for it down the road....) or 50 GB of free space as long as you are connected. The music application built into android 3.0 is supposedly able to connect right into Google Music Beta and you can search and play your music.

I signed up for the beta program a few days ago. I STILL haven't gotten an invitation yet though : (. I would encourage you to do the same though. This could be a fun, FREE, cool service and you might just be lucky enough to get an invitation!

You can sign-up here: using your Google Account.



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