Are you a digital hoarder with more photos and music on your iPhone than you know what to do with? Are you at a complete loss when you need to find a certain photo or document from a few months ago? Don’t fret… help is on the way!
You no longer have to live in fear of being buried in files. A file manager app can help you organize your pictures, music, videos, documents and more, so you can sort, play and find things easily. File manager apps are especially handy for iPhone and iPad users, since iOS doesn’t have an easy native file management tool. The lack of a user-friendly file system has often been a complaint of more advanced Apple product users who want control over organizing their files.
Now, there are several file manager apps in the App Store that will let you view, play, organize, and move files around more efficiently on iPhone and iPad (Android round-up here). We picked the best ones based on a mix of useful features, time-saving functionality, and a simple design that’s easy to use. Here are five leading apps that will save you valuable time and energy.
Documents 5 Editor's Pick
Though the name denotes documents, this powerful app also allows you to organize and play multimedia such as photos, videos and music. With a clean, easy-to-use interface, you can highlight and annotate pdfs, edit basic text files, color-code your folders, and password protect your files. Another handy tool is the ability to search inside of documents, a great time-saver.
Documents 5 works with cloud storage services like Dropbox, Google Drive, SkyDrive, Box and more, and it lets you manage your files on those programs from within the app. You can also do things like save webpages as a pdf -- all in all, lots of utility for a free app.
With this app you can work with documents, photos, videos, spreadsheets or pdfs easily with a nice-looking interface that will be friendly to iPad and iPhone users (it mimics the way apps look on your homescreen). You can connect to Dropbox, Google Drive, or Box to add files and media from your preferred cloud storage source -- however you do have to move files from your cloud storage onto your device, so make sure you have extra space. You can also use a browser-based version of Files App to upload media from your desktop.
The design lets you read Office files or pdfs, listen to music with playlists, view photos and video right in the app. Files app keeps it pretty simple, there isn’t a ton of customization available, which could be good or bad depending on your needs.
File Manager (FREE)
File Manager (FREE) packs in many features, including reading pdfs and Office files, playing music, and working with cloud storage programs like Dropbox. You can transfer files to and from your PC or Mac over wifi. From a browser in the app, you can cache web pages so you can view them later when offline, which could be helpful for traveling. One cool function is the ability to select multiple files and create and export them as a zip file with just a few intuitive taps. There is also a Premium version that is ad-free, and a Pro version with more features like FTP compatibility.
This file management tool brings together a lot of the standard attributes for apps in this category, including the ability to search and annotate pdfs, edit text files, create zip files, play audio and video. It also has a few extra features, making it super versatile -- like the addition of an audio/voice recorder, and the ability to record photos and video from the app.
It works with all the major cloud services (Google Drive, Dropbox, Box, etc.) and it also works with commonly used media platforms like Picasa, Flickr and Facebook. You can transfer files across different platforms without having to first save those files to your device, a painpoint for some other file managers. This is a productivity app for those who want all of those features in one place.
This app lets you view Office documents and pdfs, play audio and video, and transfer files from your computer via USB or wifi. You can even edit photos from within the app. One nice feature, FileApp allows you to password protect the program at startup, to keep your files secure from prying eyes.
There are add-on features that you can purchase from within the app for $.99, if you want to do even more. For example, you can create and edit basic text files, highlight and comment on pdfs and encrypt files with the upgrades. The basic version is still very useful and visually appealing, though.
Any of these file management apps can save you time and, most importantly, frustration. However some apps may have more functions and features than you really need -- so be sure to do your due diligence and figure out which one is right for you… otherwise you could be bogged down with too many menu options, and basically end up back where you started.
Documents 5 is fast, versatile and easy to use, and it’s free -- making it our pick for an app that can save you time without getting you lost with too many tasks at hand.
Have a favourite file manager app that didn’t make the list or enjoy one of the ones above? Let us know in the comments below!