Another SkyDrive app appears in Windows 8 Marketplace

Microsoft in a surprising move has updated the Windows 8 Marketplace so that there is now another SkyDrive app available. This is not the WinRT version but instead a shortcut to the full-blown desktop app that is currently available to all. SkyDrive is going to be a linchpin of Microsoft’s cloud based continuous client strategy. So what are they up to?

Windows 8 already has the WinRT version of SkyDrive, but currently that does not support folder synchronisation. I have to say I find this rather odd. I would have expected MS to simply update the existing built-in app to support such a function.

I do think there are number of reasons they have chosen this route. Firstly, it could be that a pure WinRT version will make it impossible to execute that level of interaction with the classic desktop environment. It could also be there to help aid install until a fully featured SkyDrive app baked in  with the WinRT environment and the Classic environment.

The Marketplace makes it easy to use the Web

I have been using SkyDrive and its previous incarnations for a long time now. I love this service and want the folder syncing to work natively in Windows 8. I am also, like many others, hoping that they update the client to allow choices that are more granular, concerning what syncs across all the devices.

I am actively using over 100GB of my SkyDrive storage. That is mostly my photos from my various world tours and almost anything else I can think of. I certainly can’t sync all that with my Laptop, the SSD is only 120GB so a solution for this problem has to be coming. As a Windows Phone user, you’re likely already using SkyDrive, that’s where your (currently reduced in size) photos are uploaded to and where OneNote sits awaiting the occasional sync. If you haven’t tried SkyDrive, I do urge you to head over and get the client (opens in new tab) and get syncing! If you happen to move between multiple devices it’s just perfect, the client is available for Mac, iPad & iPhone too, so nobody is left out. Oh wait, there is not an official Android app, but it’s rumoured to be coming.

Windows Phone 8 is rumoured to include a more fleshed out feature set. Granular control over what is synced from the higher capacity devices such as my coming Surface tablet and desktop PC is essential. Even with the addition of expandable storage on the phone, I really just don’t want to have everything in my life syncing everywhere. It is not practical or wanted.

Currently users of more traditional versions of Windows have the nous to nip off and fetch any software they care to install. Times move on and once a Windows user is exposed to a Marketplace for browsing and installing software, well, they might forget the old ways? Perhaps there won’t be a full version of Skydrive available for Windows 8? Is this just a neat link to grab the software from the web in the short term?

Would really like to know how you guys are using SkyDrive. What features do you want to see from the client going forward? 

Robert Brand
  • At the moment I use it for my Music, I hope in wp8 I'll be able to stream it to my phone and upload musivlc from my phone to SkyDrive.
    I also upload my photos to it and my office documents.
  • I do have some gigs free for adding some music, how do you find the streaming from SkyDrive?
  • The streaming in WP itself is horrible and written by some idiots but you can get SkyMusic app that can stream from SkyDrive. You can't download music from SkyDrive though, this idiotic limitation is so lame I'm going to get Galaxy Note, flash JB on it and forget about moronic WP limitations forever.
  • Wow if that's not trolling I don't know what is.
  • Those are legitimate complaints, there are many limitations with windows phone.
  • So, don't need to be pointed out everytime
  • Version control, is really needs it!
  • Needs a new interface, looks very dated.
  • Have you seen the leaks of the new interface for Hotmail? The 'Newmail'-leaks. Skydrive will eventually have a similar interface
  • All metro apps are sandboxed into the WinRT environment. That's why this is not a metro app. This is also the first time we see Win32 apps being sold through the marketplace. This is probably how they will sell Office to consumers. Also this is the way third party apps will be sold, like Photoshop.
  • I wonder if both sides of the client will be baked into Win 8 - unless Microsoft decide to deliver Skydrive Desktop updates to ARM machines using Windows Update then it will have to be. Delivering software in that way could start a riot. I suspect a baked in client on Arm machines will be the way forward.
  • Nothing will be baked in. The Metro app may be pre-installed, but you can uninstall it on Windows 8 and Windows RT.
    And I believe there will be two desktop apps for Windows 8 and for Windows RT, and those will get updated through Microsoft Update, just like Silverlight and Office today.
  • Sky drive desktops replaces sync live mesh... I loved the original mesh. On PC online and on my wm 6.1
  • Yes, livemesh was wonderful, it had potential but I am more than happy with current Skydrive features.I also am very happy for having 125GB of cloud storage available to me.
  • So they never added in the free photo storage they had mentioned a little while back? That's to bad.
  • that was a rumor...
    and i bet you are the ones that take rumors as offical facts. but microsoft never mentioned that, or where did they do? because i cant remember MS saying that, only rumors probably said it. free photo storage sounds stupid in my opinion specially when you get alot of gigs for free and its cheap the storage upgrade.
  • Well, you have Facebook for free picture storage. What is their limit?
  • Paul Thurrott recently confirmed that music store and photo storage are coming to Skydrive.
  • music storage... sorry
  • " coming Surface..." ????? Robert will you receive it one in next days ?
  • Haha, I wish. I will however be first in line for said device. :)
  • Isn't this the SkyDrive desktop app that was released for windows 7 a while ago? The entry in the store is just an ad for it. Or is there a new, third one which hasn't propagated to my region yet?
  • yes that's exactly what this is, but I think this is also MS showing off how Desktop apps will be available in the MS Store and what their listings will look like. We all know how Metro apps list, install, etc. But up until now I'd only been told what they were going to do w/ Desktop apps. This is a good illustration of just exactly how it'll work.
  • Yup. And that's all there is to it - desktop apps will only be listed with a link to publisher's website.
  • This is just a new style of listing then. No change? That app seems to work fine on W8 for as long as it's been out, its been on my machine.
  • I use SkyDrive on all of my computers for my documents and have recently pointed my windows 8 machines documents folders to default to saving to SkyDrive and I am using the mac version of the client as well (happy to say it was updated with the option to hide the icon from the dock). I formerly used live mesh and miss the granular options to sync specific folders but I hear some control is coming. I also miss the direct device to device sync but the bigger cloud storage pool mitigates most of that. I am also awaiting the music streaming from SkyDrive to my phone!
  • Music streaming is there for a long time, learn to use Marketplace and get yourself a SkyMusic app. But you can kiss goodbye to downloading music from your Skydrive, dumb Ballmer won't allow this. Jelly Bean here I come baby! Fed up with this dumb Ballmer's BS already.
  • shut up troll.
    you dont even know what you are taking about. and please make us a favor and get your beloved android phone and go away.
  • The go over to JB and Google services already.  And if you can stream music while you have an Internet Connection, why would you care about downloading?  It's not that hard to sync content you want via the Zune Client.  Plus, SkyMusic is an un-official app, and has NOTHING to do with MS.
  • Since There's no official dropbox app available for wp7 and skydrive released the desktop app i made the switch... i must say, dropbox syncs a lot faster, but skydrive gave me 25gb!!!
    Anyway... i am using the windows 8 developer preview and find the skydrive metro app lacking... i will get a surface too, what i dont know is if i willget the PRO or the RT... they should be making skydrive fully integrated with windows 8. and if they do and also include full office in the RT version i will probably get one...
    Microsoft must excecute the windows 8 / wp8 / xbox 720 launch flawless
    I like there products a lot, but they dont have that much wiggle room if they want to be DOMINANT in personal computing.
  • I would like the ability to specify certain folders for offline viewing along with specifying certain devices that folders sync to (like mesh used to do). Faster syncing across devices and to the web is needed.
    I hope they add an option to share the [future] music folder to the Xbox, so all music/playlists in Skydrive will appear on all devices linked to the account.
  • MS has until late Oct to flush out it's "prerelease" skydrive Metro app. Just like email and other services in Metro that can work behind the scenes so can skydrive sync if MS really wants. My guess is they feel it's a waste of resources and most WinRT users don't want to do that, only power/desktop users.
    Bloggers take too many liberties discussing limitations and guessing when in fact MS has NO LIMITS for 1st party Metro apps whatsoever as long as they can compile to x86/ARM from said code/project then push into win8 market.
    Clearly the "exclude this folder" is needed but regardless it was a smart move putting the Skydrive x86 app in marketplace, for brand awareness purposes alone (i'd wager many win8 users don't know it's available for win7)
  • Where have you been it's rare to see such posts thank you've made my day
  • i'm glad someone else sees syncing the whole ball of wax as a bad idea.  I don't currently have gigs of data in my SkyDrive account, but I want to.  The problem is that I can't because i have a Windows Tablet (Iconia W500 running W8RP) that only has 32GB ssd with <15GB free.  If I put all my pics and music in SkyDrive, the Desktop sync will immediately fill up that drive.  I sure hope they have this on their radar!
  • I believe its because on RT devices that will have less storage on general than x86 machines, they are concerned due to the way it works from a storage point of view.