Apple announced a new Files app at its Worldwide Developers Conference today that works especially well with the newly announced iOS 11 productivity features for iPad. A placeholder listing for the Files app appeared on App Store earlier today, meaning users will be able to hide and re-download the new app.

Featuring a user interface that looks like an enhanced iCloud Drive app, the Files app allows you to access files and folders in your iCloud Drive, on your device and in third-party cloud services like Box and Dropbox, as long as they include a Provider Extension for iOS.

And with new iPad productivity features on iOS 11 like an enhanced Split View mode, an interactive Dock (pictured above) and drag-and-drop, users will be able to easily, say, drag an attachment from Mail and drop it on a folder in the Files app to save it to a custom location.

It works the other way, too.

For instance, you could tap and hold the Files app icon in the Dock to bring up your recently accessed files, then simply drag a recently opened image and drop it in a precise place within the Keynote presentation you’re working on.

Your files can be browsed in the grid view with larger thumbnails or you can access details about files in the more informative list view. Items can be sorted by size, date and more, you can create new folders, delete files and so forth.

The files app requires iOS 11 and supports only 64-bit devices.

  • Does it support local file transfer from a computer though?

    • If you have a Mac, iOS allows you to use AirDrop for that. If you’re wanting to transfer files between a Mac and PC, that’s kind of what all of those 3rd party integrations like drop box are for. So yes? (Unless I misunderstand what you’re asking)

      • I meant using 3rd party programs like iFunBox. Those already allow you to browse inside the stock iOS sandbox. I’d be great if I could transfer files locally over USB to the Files app.

        Dropbox works fine for smaller files, and AirDrop is great as long as you have a Mac, but if I want to transfer a large video or some songs from Windows, I need to use iTunes. I was wondering of the Files app can solve this without a jailbreak.

      • Not directly no. Files is sort of to storage what the TV app is to media. It aggregates all these things into one app and lets you easily move files between them.

        Now if you can find a supported 3rd party storage solution with better handling of large files that might be a possibility too. But the reason I say not directly is that we don’t yet know what 3rd party developers are going to do with this app. It’s entirely possible we could see a new type of 3rd party app that is designed to make exactly this as easy as possible. But out of the box I don’t think direct sharing to Windows PCs is apple’s highest priority.

      • Thanks for that simple yet detailed reply.

        I’m guess Files is located in /var/root/stash/Applications then, and it just finds files stored by services somewhere else and displays them. This makes it impossible to access with iFunBox :/

        Mega is a good 3rd party solution for large files, but if I already have a file on my computer locally, it should be required for me to use an online 3rd party solution to download that file to the Files app. Though it makes sense, Apple is all about the internet and cloud computing these days, and don’t really care about wired transfers. Or Windows.

      • That’s my understanding. However, I will say, that in addition to the cloud services there is an option labeled “On my iPad”. I’m not sure where this refers to, but there is at least reference to local storage but there isn’t anything there and I can’t really do anything with it that I can see.

        I unfortunately can’t test it since I can’t update to the BETA version of MacOS (since BETA MacOS versions can’t push updates to the App Store) and get the latest iTunes version, but I know years ago, if you connected a device to your computer and opened iTunes you could navigate to that app and access the local storage for it. I suppose it’s within the realm of possibility that this app now exposes some degree of file storage to iTunes for direct file copying, but (like I said I can’t really test that). If someone else sees this and wants to give that a try I’d be really interested in seeing the results though!

    • John

      Yes. If you look at the screenshot above, the second option down is “On My iPad”

  • Agneev

    So no use for Dropbox app?

  • Douglas L. Warren

    is this just an iPad only app??