The iCloud question the analysts never asked

“You can be sure that, when Apple executives field questions at a quarterly meeting with analysts — yes the ‘a’ word again — they will be asked softball or relatively obscure questions about the company’s financial performance that few care about,” Gene Steinberg writes for Tech Night Owl. “It doesn’t help that these analysts seem not to have the slightest knack for real journalism. Even though they are allowed one question and one follow-up, you’d think someone would ask about Apple’s real problems, such as the ongoing troubles impacting iCloud. Yes, iCloud may indeed have 125 million users, as Apple claims. I have no reason to doubt the number.”

Steinberg writes, “At the same time, what about the quality of the service iCloud delivers. What about the ongoing problems that are still being reported, particularly in syncing bookmarks and contacts across multiple devices? Take this all-too-famliar example: For the longest time, my Address Book has been filled with multiple entries for some names. Those listings aren’t duplicated on my iPhone, so why is it happening on my Mac? Worse, when you delete a duplicate, the deleted entry reappears. And I’m not alone in reporting such issues, and there are more.”

Steinberg writes, “Surely one of those analysts could have used the iCloud question to ask how Apple is treating ongoing reports of sync problems and email outages. What about a question about the overall customer satisfaction rate with iCloud, and how does Apple plan to eliminate the glitches? Never asked.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We’ve certainly encountered the Address Book issue. Have you? Any other iCloud issues you wish Apple would fix?


  1. The ability to merge calendars that are synced with iCloud and to selectively stream photos, rather than all or nothing. And also to be able to stream photos to iCloud but not need to stream all photos back down to every iOS device.

      1. Amen, iDisk in combination with the iPhone app affords me a great solution for sharing large files securely with my customers.

        The duplicate contacts has plagued me since the early days of MobileMe. I called support and they suggested editing the contacts, weeding out dupes etc, on MobileMe and then on the next sync replace on my devices worked for a few days and then dupes proliferated. Some contacts have 6 entries most only 4-5.

        1. I’m still dreading the day that Apple turns off Mobile Me and my Leopard Server no longer syncs with my Snow Leopard Mac Book Pro, Lion Mac Book Air, iPhone, and iPad.

      2. +1

        I’m really going to miss those iDisk functions. I have a lot of websites with content. It’s easy, effective, and is a really great service. Bummer

  2. I don’t know what the f*** he’s talking about. iCloud has worked seamlessly behind the scenes for me, without a hitch so far. I’ve had zero problems synching contacts on address book, reminders, email messages, calendar events, bookmarks, iWork documents, notes and any other items/apps he cares to name.

    All except Photostream, because I don’t use that, as I prefer to keep my collection of porn, I mean tasteful photographs, all to myself. No, actually I prefer syncing through iTunes/iPhoto for my photos, that’s why I don’t use Phtostream.

    1. i have had the same problem– i occasionally get up to over 10,000 contacts. It may be because ive been using this service since its inception, 10? years ago, and my contacts has been constantly f-ed up. i do the find duplicated and replace the cloud based copy, but it slowly starts to duplicated with every sync. Ra

  3. The mail system has definitely not improved since MobileMe…. Check Apple’s discussion boards, they’re always ranting about it. I finally switched away from iCloud because the constant and unexpected outages were interrupting my workflow. I now just forward everything to Gmail. I never had an issue with the calendar system but definitely with Address Book and with Mail.

    The whole “It just works!” has become a cliché, and something to be taken with a huge grain of salt.

  4. Problems with email here as well. I’ll have a new email show up on my MacBook, but when I go to pull it up on my iPhone it’s not there. The iPhone says that it is “Checking for Mail” forever (several minutes) before the email comes up. Didn’t used to do this.

    1. which isn’t a MobileMe/iCloud issue.

      Shut down the mail app and fire it up again, my mom had this happen. And she doesn’t even use her iCloud email.

      Remember that you rarely ever hear from the people that do NOT have any issue… But you ALWAYS hear from those that do, or just do not like the change…

      Only thing I’ll miss, iDisk. But Dropbox does replace 99% of iDisk for me though.

  5. This guy apparently doesn’t know how to ask for help….if would just go into iCloud preferences, turn off contacts and turn them back on the dupes in contacts will go away….just gotta read to find the answers….idiot.

    1. Thanks for that, I have had the dupes on my home iMac, but not on my one at work, or on the MBA, iPad or iPhone, but hadn’t been able to find the answer on Apple support, so had just been putting up with the problem. iCloud for me has not been as ‘it just works’ as I have come to expect from 27 years of reliable Apple user experience.

    2. that doesnt work. you have to “find duplicates” in Calendar/ iCal and remove them. Then replace your cloud based contacts with the newly fixed list….

  6. I’d like to the see ability to hide images in photostream, much like you can in iPhoto. That way you could control in a simple way what showed up from a passive, view only point of view in things like Apple TV, but all new images would still show up in your devices so you could archive them, or edit them for future use.

    Often I have images I’ve taken on my phone when I’m out and about which I don’t want to have show up on Apple TV, because they need cropping, or are lesser versions of other pictures, but I don’t want to delete them. If I could hide them, but still have them sync back to my Mac I wouldn’t have to worry about importing them from my phone and merging them back into albums, I could just do it all in one go.

    Personally I’ve been really happy with iCloud. It’s a bit irritating as we still have an iPhone 3G and older Mac which don’t support it, but in use it has been perfect. With Mobile Me I did have a number of issues. I don’t know if it was because I didn’t upgrade my Mobile Me, but set up a new id, copied all my mail over, and the same for all my calendars and address book.

  7. To me the biggest issue with iCloud is the inability to merge your previous apple ID with an iCloud account. It’s ridiculous that the only way to fully utilize iCloud is with a address, but you can’t sync the information/purchases of a previous ID. I’d like to get rid of my gmail account and rely solely on my account, but apple won’t let me.

    1. i agree completely. the other problem that has now popped up is the need to have two email accounts to use the app store and (i guess) iTunes. my wife only has one email account, but for her to buy stuff on the app store or ibooks she needs a second account, so she is using mine. what does someone do who lives alone and only has one email account?

  8. I am very happy usong iCloud BUT Apple must find a way to make an inatant sync of iWork documents made on the Mac that have to be instantly sent to iOS devices…

  9. The reason the duplicates appear is that the entries had conflicting date stamps when iCloud was first turned on. In other words, iCloud inherited a mess that it can’t clean up. The solution is tedious but simple. This example is for the Calendar, but it works for the others too:

    1. Turn off iCloud on all devices.

    2. Archive the calendar on the device that has no duplicates and whose entries are the most accurate.

    3. Delete all the calendar entries on all devices.

    4. Turn on iCloud on all devices

    5. Import the archive back into the calendar on that one device.

    iCloud propagates the calendar to all devices. Everything is in sync, there are no duplicates, and it stays that way.

    1. its not a problem with fwd’ing mail.

      If he had an iTunes account, with purchases, prior to getting the email… He simply CAN’T go into iTunes and update his email address from the gmail to the me account. Apple sets up a brand new iTunes account with your email, and refuses to shut it down or allow users to “transfer” an old account to the “new” address.

      Something about combining two accounts into one, apple forbids it.

      If apple didn’t set up a new iTunes account with every account… They wouldn’t have this issue.

  10. No issues with contacts, but I have issues with music. Any time I buy a song via my iPhone, it’ll get automatically downloaded onto my MacBook Pro (as one would expect). The problem occurs the next time my phone syncs with my notebook, I will invariably end up with two copies of the song on my hard drive. Deleting the 2nd one that was added will remove it entirely from my phone, even though one copy still exists in my iTunes library.

    So right now I always buy music via iTunes on my MacBook in order to avoid the issue.

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