Microsoft SkyDrive gets revamp just ahead of Windows 8 release

Take the leap into the new SkyDive Wednesday

Microsoft's extreme home makeover continues this week with a shellac of paint, and then some, applied to its cloud storage service, SkyDrive.

In an effort to gear up for the coming launch of Windows 8, Microsoft has recently revamped services like Hotmail to better reflect the upcoming product line.

Recently redubbed Outlook, the email service's retooling was just the beginning when it came to Microsoft's plans to refresh their existing brands.

Now the company's cloud storage service SkyDrive is undergoing a similar renaissance, as Microsoft has reworked the look and performance of SkyDrive to better suit their upcoming plans.

Android app on the way

SkyDrive was supposed to be Microsoft's answer to services like Dropbox and Google Drive, and MS is hoping the new and improved look will convince even more people to make the switch.

Though there are already 4 million people using the mobile version on iOS devices and Windows phones, there is an Android app on the way.

It might not be out for a few weeks, but making SkyDrive available on Android devices should help expand the user base quite a bit.

Performance enhancements across the board

In addition to the mobile version of SkyDrive expanding, Microsoft has also worked hard to improve the technical performance of the service on Macs and Windows PCs.

Adding in a new contextual toolbar, multi-select drag and drop capabilities, and instant search makes it important to have faster response times.

When tested by Microsoft, the new SkyDrive was almost twice as fast in uploading photos, and the service now syncs with a computer four times as fast as it previously did.

New improvements have also been made to the developer version of SkyDrive, including removing file restrictions and adding the ability to upload images at full resolution.

Microsoft is clearly taking the upcoming release of Windows 8 very seriously, and it will be interesting to see just how much of a wide-spread impact these changes they are affecting will have on the rest of their brands.

Via Windows Blog