Goodbye .Mac, Hello MobileMe

MobileMe BoxApple’s .Mac brand is in it’s final days and will be re-branded MobileMe to coincide with the iPhone 3G launch. While this is mostly a branding change for existing .mac users, there is one feature that is already lost. Bookmarks are no longer available via the web, although they will still sync between Macs. At one time I used this but stopped long ago. The lack of an outcry tells me no one else used it either.

MobileMe also requires OS X 10.4.11 or better (Apple recommends Leopard of course). The included storage doubles from 10 to 20GB. Of course, the big change is support for the iPhone and iPod Touch.

Apple has also announced:

7/9/2008, 6pm-12am PT

As part of the MobileMe launch, www.mac.com will be taken offline at 6pm PT on Wednesday, July 9th.

Members will be unable to access www.mac.com or any .Mac services during this time with the exception of .Mac Mail accessed via a desktop application, iPhone, or iPod touch.

MobileMe will be available as soon as possible during this maintenance window.

So it looks like the changes for existing users will happen tomorrow with MobileMe being available to new users on the 11th.

MobileMe is available from Apple for $99 a year which is the same price that .Mac was sold for. There’s a $30 discount if bought with a new Mac. MobileMe is available from Amazon for $90, which is only $9 off the list price. Last time I checked .Mac had been $30 off list from Amazon. Amazon also has the family pack for $135, which is $14 off the list price.

I’m interested to see how MobileMe evolves over time, .mac never really took off. I’ve been a .Mac user but the main selling point for me was the ability to sync multiple Macs, not the apps. I used iDisk a bit but never really used the other features. Is Apple moving to “the cloud” with MobileMe or is it still just for people who have multiple Apple hardware devices?