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Monday, May 09, 2011, 10:30 am PT (01:30 pm ET)

Amazon Cloud adds support for Apple's iOS; UK Queen orders an iPad

Amazon has silently added support for browser-based playback of music in its new cloud streaming service on iOS-powered devices. Also, after using iPads owned by Princes Wills and Harry, the Queen of the United Kingdom decided to buy her own.

Amazon Cloud gets browser-based iOS support

Amazon quietly added support for iOS devices through its built-in Safari browser, as noted by TechCrunch. Users can log into their account on Amazon and access the Cloud Player, which now allows streaming of audio files stored on its servers.

Users who visit the site will still be prompted with a message warning them that their browser is not supported. However, music playback now works through the service, and audio is even paused when a push notification or call is received.

"Of course, this implementation is still not as good as it is on Android, where Cloud Player is part of a native app," author MG Siegler wrote. "But if Amazon did a little web work and made the web-based player optimized for the iPhone and iPad, it would certainly be very useable on a regular basis."

Amazon's cloud streaming service launched in March, but initially only had support for streaming via the Web and on Android devices. Amazon Cloud Drive offers 5GB of free online storage, with premium accounts expandable to up to 1,000GB.

Amazon


The push to launch the service, which requires users to upload their own songs and is not backed by any recording industry licensing deals, was seen as a move to preemptively take on Apple and its own anticipated cloud music streaming service. AppleInsider reported exclusively last month that Apple is expected to unveil its "iCloud" service this year with support for bookmarks, e-mail, contacts and more, in addition to music streaming.

The Queen opts for an iPad

The 85-year-old monarch of the United Kingdom has asked her staff to buy her an iPad after she was "wowed" by Apple's tablet when her grandsons showed it off to her, The Sun reported Monday. Queen Elizabeth II was said to be impressed by the large screen and the light weight of what was presumably a second-generation iPad.

A "royal insider" reportedly told the publication that the Queen hadn't seen anything like an iPad before. The royal Princes apparently thought it was "hilarious" that their grandmother ordered one so quickly.

The tabloid reported that the Queen is apparently a "big fan" of Apple's products, and owns at least two iPods — a £169 model bought back in 2005, and another given as a gift from U.S. President Barack Obama in 2009.