iCloud’s Photo Stream feature is handy, in that it pushes photos shot with a compatible iPhone, iPad or iPod touch to Apple’s servers and then back to other authorized devices. Meanwhile, iOS 5 has tweeting built in, so there’s a temptation to shoot photo with Apple’s Camera app and then tweet it from the Camera Roll.
That’s fast and convenient, but also a hindrance. Specifically, my iPhone, iPad and Mac are now cluttered with space-hogging one-offs I shot for the sake of a tweet or a Facebook update. 1 What’s worse is that you can’t delete such throw-away photos from your Photo Stream with an iDevice. Instead, you’ve got to visit icloud.com and click “Reset Photo Stream,” which nukes the lot, good and bad. That’s why I’ve started using Camera+ again for tweeting pictures.
I’ve noticed this too as someone who recently upgraded his first gen iPad and iPhone 4 to iOS 5.
The chain of my reactions to said iCloud issue/feature/bug has been:
1) Awesome! Everything is synchronized!
2) Shit, everything is synchronized.
The glass-half-full side of me sees this as the iCloud ‘1.0’. Which it is. Like iOS 1.0 (aka iPhone OS), iCloud has issues. It’s missing features, but as far as this specific gripe about synchronization, from the Apple side of things, this is great. Everything is working as it’s supposed to. The foundation has been laid.
I’m not trying to spin things as iCloud being perfect, because it’s not, but things could be a lot worse. This could be MobileMe all over again. Remember, we just learned in the last week of Steve Jobs trying to buy Dropbox in 2009 and being turned down. This meant Apple had to figure out file synchronizing on their own.
So yes, things are very raw right now with iCloud and how it handles photos, but improvements are en route.
I guarantee it.
Remember, that’s how Apple rolls.