COMMENT: Does MobileMe app mean no other cloud apps on the iPhone?

Apple's launch of its MobileMe iDisk remote access app makes the iPhone able to access files from your iDisk (MobileMe) drive in the cloud.

Now before we get into the ramifications of what this could mean for devices in the future, does it also mean that devices, allowing you to access a drive elsewhere on the Web, will be rejected from the App Store?

Surely if Apple is sticking to their guns about duplicated features (Google Voice, anyone?), then the same will have to be enforced for any application that lets you access an external drive, be it from a hard drive maker or streaming company.

It's a shame because the notion of being able to access content away from the physical limitations of the device in your hand is appealing. Yet I don't really want to have to give Apple another £60 a year MobileMe charge for the privilege, when surely in time I will be able to do it from my own cloud space or hard drive.

But regardless of Apple's decision as to whether or not they let other web drives get in on the action, this development does open up options for smaller, less storage dependent drives.

Why would I need a 32GB iPhone if I can store virtually all of my content in the cloud and access it as when I need it? Why do I need to pay to download a song on to my phone when all that is really needed is for the seller to keep a copy and let me access it?

Unlike CDs, we no longer see any physical result of buying music. I download a song or a movie and all I see is the track name and some metadata about said download. I never get to hold it in my hand, flick through the pamphlet or lend it to a friend to never get it back.

So, in reality all I care about is that when I click to play it, it plays.

Of course, it's too early for us to move to a cloud computing model as connectivity to the cloud isn't as avilable as we might like. It's getting there, but it's not there yet.

Until then if I want to access my files remotely via an iPhone I'll have to use Apple's MobileMe software, but I do hope the company isn't as draconian with other apps that have the same feature, without the additional cost, as it has been with Google Voice apps and other rejects from the App Store.