SkyDrive relaunches as OneDrive, adds new features

Following a legal battle with satellite broadcaster BskyB, Microsoft was forced to change the name of its popular cloud storage service SkyDrive, opting to go with OneDrive. The name change was unveiled three weeks ago, but today the update begins rolling out across all compatible devices.

Microsoft hasn’t simply just changed the name and logo of its product, and switched the web address to onedrive.com, it’s added some additional features too, and to celebrate the launch is giving away a grand total of 10 petabytes of free storage.

"When we announced the new name OneDrive, we noted how it is much more aligned with our vision for the future. Our goal is to make it as easy as possible for you to get all of your favorite stuff in one place -- one place that is accessible via all of the devices you use every day, at home and at work. Because let’s face it, until now, cloud storage services have been pretty hard to use, and the vast majority of us still have our stuff spread out everywhere. In fact, according to a recent poll, at least 77 percent of people who are familiar with the cloud still have content stored on a device that is not backed up elsewhere. We want to change that,” Microsoft says.

Android users can now enjoy automatic camera backup, so photos are uploaded to the cloud as soon as they are taken -- something that’s been possible for iOS and Windows Phone users for a while.

You can now share and view videos in OneDrive as easily as photos. Videos get transcoded on the fly, so they’re ready to watch at the optimal size on any device. In other words, if you upload a 720p clip and share it with a friend who wants to watch it on their smartphone over a 3G connection, it will be served up at the most appropriate resolution.

If you require more free storage than the default 7GB, OneDrive offers a choice of ways to earn additional space. Refer friends to the service and you’ll receive 500 MB per friend, up to a maximum of 5 GB and Microsoft will also give you 3 GB just for using the camera backup feature. If you want to pay for additional storage, there’s a new monthly payment plan.

To celebrate the official launch of OneDrive Microsoft is giving 100,000 people 100 GB of free storage for one year. For your chance to be one of those lucky people you’ll need to follow @OneDrive on Twitter and watch for clues.

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