Documents 1Documents by Readdle is a popular file manager that lets you store music, videos, photos, and more. The company has recently been overhauling their entire line of productivity apps for iOS 7 and this one is no different.

Documents 5 is the completely redesigned version of its predecessor and comes with plenty of new features to make you think twice about which file manager you want to use from now on. Plus, if you have other Readdle apps on your iPad, you can access them from inside Documents…

Design

The updated version of Documents is similar to its predecessor in layout, but significantly different in design. The app has been overhauled to represent iOS 7’s sharper, flatter look. At the main storage screen, the menu sits off to the left. You can access your full list of documents and import items from iCloud, Network, Browser, and Add-ons.

When you log into different Network accounts, they will be listed under your “Accounts” section so that you can switch between them easily. You will also see a list of recently opened documents, so going back to a project only takes one tap.

When you open a PDF file, you will see available annotations. Documents lets you highlight, zoom in, and bookmark PDF documents. In order to add text notes, freehand draw, fill in forms, and sign contracts, you will need to add PDF Expert 5. If you already have the app, you will be able to use all editing options within Documents.

When you open a music file, you will see the music player options with play/pause, fast-forward, rewind, and volume controls. You can also shuffle and replay tracks. Music is Airplay compatible from within the app. Just tap the icon in the bottom right corner of the screen to switch to an AirPlay-enabled device.

When you open documents, they will remain open when you access other files. If, for example, you have a project outline, a letter, and a website that you’ve turned into a PDF, they will each have a tab at the top of the screen so you can switch between them.

Documents 3App Use

The first thing you will want to do is begin loading your documents into this app. You can add files, music, photos and more from a wide variety of sources, including iCloud, Dropbox, Google Drive, Office 365, OneDrive, and more. You can also add web pages or documents from the Internet by using the in-app web browser.

Start by typing the URL or a search word into the Browser function. Then, tap the import button in the upper right corner when you find what you are looking for. Websites can be stored directly, or turned into PDF documents using PDF Converter.

Speaking of which, the biggest new feature in Documents is the Add-ons section. If you already have some of Readdle’s productivity apps on your iPad, their functions will be usable within this app. For example, if you want to turn a .docx file into a PDF and you have PDF Converter, tap the export button in the upper right corner and then tap “Convert to PDF.” It will automatically redirect you to the converter app, turn the file into a PDF, and store it back in Documents. You can use Printer Pro from within the app to print documents, Scanner Pro for scanning, and PDF Expert to annotate and edit PDFs, all from within the Documents app.

Documents 5 also has a more full-featured file manager. Users can move, rename, create, unzip, and upload file and folders. Drag and drop files to a new location or folder. You can even drag a file directly to one of your network accounts like Dropbox or iCloud.

You can star, unzip, and add color-coded tags to documents for organized file sharing with OS X Mavericks. Downloads take place in the background, so you don’t’ have to stop working on other things while the app is downloading large files. You can also play music from Documents in the background when you are not using the app.

Documents 2The Good

The best thing about this updated app is the deep integration on the iPad of the other productivity apps that the company offers. It turns a basic file storage app into a productivity hub.

The Bad

The Add-ons feature, which is the best part of the update, is currently only available on the iPad. Hopefully, the feature will eventually make it to the iPhone, as well.

Value

Documents is free to download and full of amazing features. Combined with Readdle’s other apps, this might be the most valuable productivity app you have on your iPad. Note that this update is currently propagating in the App Store. It may take you a few minutes to see this updated version on your device.

Conclusion

As a file-managing app, this one is great. It has plenty of features, including music playback and color-coded tagging. It works great and runs smoothly. You can even unzip files with one tap. What really makes Documents 5 tick is the integration of the company’s other productivity apps. If you are already using PDF Expert or Printer Pro on the iPad, you will love having Documents to house all of your files. This app is available on the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch. Download it in the App Store today.

Related Apps

Dropbox, Google Drive, and OneDrive are all file storage and management apps.

Other Readdle apps worth checking out

What do you think of the new Documents app? Are you ready to invest?

  • Agru

    Hey I remember you IDB staff wanted to know this. I’ve deleted pdf expert after unlocking “premium” features inside Documents and they still work. Great job Readdle

  • RafaelMelo

    I humbly admit I don’t understand the use of this app. Can you please give me a little light?

    • Agru

      It’s a file manager, exactly what ios misses.

    • Tommmy

      1. As was stated before — file manager — store and manage files just like on you computer.

      2. PDF viewer. It’s fast and you can highlight text and add bookmarks even without addons.

      3. Supports several file formats, including .zip.

      4. It’s fast.

      5. You can link it with you Dropbox and Google Drive account.

      6. As it states in the review — you can download files using a direct link (I haven’t tried that yet).

      7. It has a built-in web browser which allows to store web-pages (just like Pocket or Instapaper).

      For me it is a good and free replace for Goodreader which became a bit buggy with viewing PDFs after I’ve updated iPad to iOS 7.