Samsung’s S-Cloud: An iCloud Ripoff?

Despite being involved in numerous Patent disputes with Apple in courts from Australia to Germany, Korean electronics giant and smartphone manufacturer Samsung has decided that despite its reputation for (allegedly) blatantly ripping off Apple’s design aesthetic and software UI, it is going to favor its soon to be unveiled cloud service with the totally original moniker of S-Cloud. Of course, this bears no resemblance whatsoever to Apple’s iCloud suite of internet services.

The service is rumored to be announced officially at Samsung’s special event next month in which the company is set to announce the Galaxy S III, the sequel to its wildly popular Galaxy S II smartphone. With a user interface and design language eerily similar to those of Apple’s iPhone and iPad devices, the cells and tabs of the Galaxy line has been the center of a heated battle between Samsung and the folks in Cupertino for some time.

According to tech blog Engadget, Samsung will “reportedly offer an ‘unlimited service’ with less of the content or storage restrictions imposed by iCloud. It’ll also apparently come with a VOD-store, offering up audio and video content for a fee, presumably beside what’s available in Google Play.”

Other companies, even (shocker!) before Apple, have offered cloud services, some, such as Box.com and Dropbox, with similar names, but given Samsung’s history of aping Apple, it would not be surprising to see the new S-Cloud being designed along identical lines to the Cupertino cloud.

Apple’s service allows instant or near instant synchronization of data between devices in the company’s “ecosystem.” Among the features are automatic downloading of pictures taken on an iPhone onto an iPad over the internet, purchases made on one device being sent to other user owned devices without human intervention and, best for writers such as myself, the automatic synching of documents, calendar, notes, mail and tasks between devices.

iCloud has not yet replaced services such as Dropbox or Microsoft Skydrive for me, but it has certainly made customer’s livee easier and has been both a major selling point and tool for customer retention for Apple.

Samsung, which manufactures some of the world’s most popular Android handsets, evidently wants its customers to ensnare its customers in a device ecosystem just as Apple has, which, should they succeed, could help revitalize their lackluster tablet sales.

The new service, according to tech news service Tech Radar, will lack “the restrictions and limits found on Apple’s iCloud service, allowing Samsung users to store any content they wish in the cloud.”

“The rumours suggest that Samsung has teamed up with Microsoft to ensure worldwide availability of S-Cloud, which is expected to be available on various Samsung TVs, laptops, tablets and smartphones. S-Cloud users will apparently get more than 5GB of storage, but it’s not clear if that is a free or paid-for allowance. Samsung is also said to be ready to offer various HD quality TV shows and movies as well as music content through its S-Cloud service.”

Meanwhile, Blackberry users be warned, your access to Google’s cloud through the Google Sync app will be coming to an end. While the App installed on your smartphone will still work, the search giant will no longer be offering new downloads after June 1st.