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Cloud App For Mac: An Early Review

There’s been a lot of buzz around this recently.

While the developers described it as “every Mac user’s wet dream”, the twitter population went crazy about it. There was someone who said Cloud was a forecast app, then someone said it was only vaporware.

Cloud is real, guys. And it’s a wet dream.

First, I’d like to say  that I received my invite today and that Cloud is in its early development stages. So, many things will change and improve but still, I’ll give you a glimpse of what this amazing application can do.

Now, let’s put an end to this buzz: Cloud is a file sharing app.

You can share screenshots, urls, pictures, files, folders and even Photoshop documents.

Then, another revelation: Cloud is a menubar application. It sits there in your menubar and you can “launch it” via a unique hotkey which by default is Cmd + Alt + CTRL + U.

Last, Cloud supports - and will support - many other Mac applications: Safari, Firefox, Photoshop, Grab, Finder, iPhoto, iPhone Simulator, iTunes. Rumor has it that in the future it will support Tweetie 2, we’ll see.

Anyway, now that you know what Cloud is, it’s time to see what it does.

As I said, Cloud is an application that lets you share stuff over the internet. But, unlike many other apps, it’s very well integrated into the OS. To start using it you just have to create an account and fill the preferences, then you’re set.

With Cloud you can share a file in the Finder just by selecting it and pressing the hotkey, then the app will perform all the operations (upload, url generation, url pasting in the clipboard) in the background. And this works with web pages and .psd files as well.

As you can see, once you’ve told Cloud to upload something, the  icon the menubar will begin to turn black: when it’s completely black you’ll have the assigned url copied in the clipboard and the icon will be grey again.

The already mentioned external apps integration works thanks to “plugins” called Raindrops: they are located into > Contents > Raindrops. There are seven of them by now, but I believe many others will come in the future.

The Phoshop raindrop acts like this: if you hit the hotkey with an open PS document, Cloud will export the canvas with all the visible layers and upload it as a PNG file.

See the banner I was creating in PS? I just hit the hotkey, and here it is:

The ways Cloud can improve your workflow are many: you can share a screenshot / url in a matter of seconds, give your co-workers a quick preview of the .psd you’re working on or quickly share a .zip folder.

To me, this is a real dream come true: sure, there’s Dropbox, but Cloud just feel so…natural that I’m already asking myself how can I live without it now.

Cloud is an invite- only beta, be sure to follow @getcloudapp on Twitter to receive updates.

Stay tuned! ;)

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