The Windows Live SkyDrive has been brought under the big brand and is now known as Microsoft SkyDrive.
This is a smart move as it allows SkyDrive to be marketed as a “free” cloud storage service and not simply as a feature of Windows Live or historically Hotmail. Microsoft has gone further and provided clients for both the Windows and Apple desktop operating systems. This, coupled with the improved mobile clients for the Windows Phone 7, iPhone, and iPad, makes accessing and managing your files in the cloud seamless and easy. Can we finally do away with USB flash drives?
Ed Bot of ZDNet wrote an article, “Dropbox, SkyDrive, Google Drive: which one is right for you?” comparing the features of the three most popular file storage clients in the cloud which is very objective. In it, he discusses offerings of Microsoft SkyDrive, GoogleDrive, and Dropbox, what you get and what you miss when choosing one platform over the other.
My preference has been with Microsoft SkyDrive because as the video above points out, the ability to create, edit, annotate, and share Microsoft Office files is what I needed. In addition, when coupled with Windows Phone 7, having access to your files for further review is convenient. In one case, my daughter was able to share her analytical thesis, I was able to review it and make changes or simply add comments, and publish it back to her with those changes tracked and comments in the sidebar. I didn’t have to modify the content directly, thus, re-writing the paper for her; nor did we have to shuttle different versions of the same file around via email or USB drive’s. It worked out perfectly.
The current upgrades and releases definitely makes SkyDrive a top contender in the cloud storage and document sharing spaces. More so even with the recent release of the desktop clients. While Windows 8 Consumer Preview integrates with SkyDrive natively if you choose to authenticate using your Windows Live credentials, earlier versions of Windows and Mac desktops and laptops can benefit from installing the client.