updated 04:35 pm EDT, Wed July 27, 2011
Dell gives Stage syncing to compete with Apple
Dell hoped to preempt Apple Wednesday by adding its own rough parallel to iCloud. An updated Stage UI now includes SyncUP, a Nero-developed sync service that both automatical spreads files and streams music, photos, and videos between computers and mobile devices. The service is cross-platform and can see Android and Windows devices, though it won't share copy-protected content.
Everyone gets 2GB of free general storage and can subscribe to get as much as 100GB per year. Also included with the Stage update is new support to turn Android devices into a remote control for Windows computers on the local network.
The new Stage quietly began rolling out on July 7 with new shipments of the Inspiron Duo netbook and Inspiron One all-in-one desktop on the Windows side of Dell's lineup and the Streak 5 and Streak 7 tablets for Android. Remote control is available on both Streaks and the Venue as an Android Market download. Any Dell PC with an older version of Stage, such as the XPS 15z, should have the option of a downloadable update today.
Dell's full-scale Stage launch rollout comes just under two months after Apple's introduction of iCloud and suggests the Texas PC designer is hoping to seize on some of Apple's success before iCloud goes live in earnest, which most expect to be in September. Apple's service might come later but will also be more tightly integrated and advanced, exempting at least music and photos from the storage limits, raising the free limit to 5GB, and including deeper features like full mobile device backups.