Apple has announced that it will be revealing details of its new iCloud service for storing and retrieving data at its worldwide developers conference which kicks off in San Francisco this coming Monday 6th June. The much anticipated announcement will be made by company CEO Steve Jobs, whose ill health and gaunt appearance have lent a ‘will he or won’t he turn up’ element to the hoopla surrounding the launches of new products at such conferences. “This may be the most powerful data centre ever, outside of government,” analyst Richard Doherty says. “It will be able to handle millions of streams per minute without any network hiccups.”

Apple’s announcement follows recent moves by Google and Amazon to establish their own cloud based music services allowing users upload songs they own to servers which allow them to download them to various devices. However, while Google Music Beta and Amazon Cloud Drive aren’t compatible with the iPhone, the iCloud most certainly will be, offering users another reason to stay with iTunes.

Further, it is speculated that Apple’s cloud system will allow iTunes to scan devices for music and then allow users to access music in the cloud, meaning no uploading will be required. Even more importantly, speculation persists that Apple has inked a deal with three of the four major labels to use their music, and has even paid a massive fee for them to allow pirated material to be accessed on the cloud.

However, it is believed that negotiations with music publishers are not yet at such an advanced stage.

Industry analysts also suggest that the reason Apple brought forward the announcement of the iCloud service was to dampen speculation that the worldwide developers conference would see the much anticipated launch of the iPhone 5, which is believed to have been delayed until September due to parts shortages.

Apple’s press release says “CEO Steve Jobs and a team of Apple executives will kick off the company’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) with a keynote address on Monday, June 6 at 10:00 a.m. At the keynote, Apple will unveil its next generation software – Lion, the eighth major release of Mac OS® X; iOS 5, the next version of Apple’s advanced mobile operating system which powers the iPad®, iPhone® and iPod touch®; and iCloud®, Apple’s upcoming cloud services offering.”