Amazon is having a mixed month, with multiple headline-grabbing releases but decidedly mixed-to-negative reviews on those offerings.
First, the mega-retailer promised users that their “Amazon Prime Day” would offer online shoppers better deals than Black Friday. But on the day of the sale, users were disappointed to discover mediocre deals on unwanted products, like “a plate of ham” or “XXL Diane Keaton T-Shirt.” And despite posting strong sales, Amazon got far more press from the hashtag “#PrimeDayFail” than from their actual deals.
There’s little more to say about Amazon Prime Day that hasn’t already been said, which is perhaps why the event so overshadowed an earlier announcement that Amazon would be stepping into the mobile cloud storage arena. A week before the failed Amazon Prime Day, the company announced Cloud Drive, a “complete cloud storage solution” with apps for iOS and Android users.
Silicon Valley watchdogs say that Cloud Drive is Amazon’s opening salvo in a battle against popular cloud storage options like Dropbox, Google Drive, and Microsoft OneDrive. Cloud Drive allows iOS and Android users to view files and folders; preview documents; access photos, videos, and music files; and share those files to other apps. And at just $60 a year, Amazon’s cloud service is the cheapest unlimited storage plan of its kind. The company also offers unlimited photo storage and 5 GB for other file types for just $12 per year.
Studies show that 13% of consumers between the ages of 18 and 24 have never even owned a physical photo album, which means cloud-based apps are likely the future of photo storage and sharing. Unfortunately, like Amazon Prime Day, so far Cloud Drive has received underwhelming support.
“The problem with Amazon’s service is that it’s just not competitive on features, even as it undercuts its rivals on pricing. For instance, Amazon still doesn’t offer a proper desktop sync app, so the only way to add files from a computer is through a drag-and-drop interface.”
Overall, the site said the new cloud app was “hard to recommend for now,” although it does represent an exciting step forward for Amazon.