Microsoft will soon rebrand its SkyDrive cloud storage service OneDrive. The OneDrive splash page currently reads “Coming Soon.”
It now appears that there is more to the coming OneDrive rollout than a simple name change. According to leaked screenshots posted by LiveSide, Microsoft will roll out a number of incentives for users in an effort to boost their usage of the service, and bring their friends aboard as well.
Microsoft declined to comment.
SkyDrive, Microsoft’s current and soon-to-be-renamed cloud storage service, provides users with 7 gigabytes of free storage. Presuming that Microsoft maintains that level of free storage in OneDrive, users will be able to pick up a total of 15 gigabytes of capacity, given that the new incentive structure will allow users to agglom another 8 gigabytes to their account.
5 of the 8 potential gigabytes will come from referrals: 500 megabytes per referral, up to 10. And, OneDrive will reward users who link their phone’s camera roll to OneDrive with another 3 gigabytes of storage.
Users can create the link either through the OneDrive — currently SkyDrive, of course — iOS and Android apps, or with the built-in function that exists in Windows Phone.
All this is unconfirmed with the company, but mirrors similar methods employed by the rival storage firm Dropbox, meaning they are unsurprising and almost proven tactics.
Why would Microsoft want to get people to automatically upload their photos to OneDrive? Increasing user buy-in to the service not only boosts the service’s total revenue and use, but also draws potential oxygen from competitors. And given the importance of cloud storage to Microsoft’s larger services vision, anything to bolster that effort is worthy.
We’re seeing a decline in the cost, and price of delivering a gigabyte of cloud storage. As Dropbox, Google Drive, Box, and Microsoft vie for both consumer and enterprise market share in the space, expect more of this sort of effort.