Feature Comparison of FileMagnet Datacase and Files

Discussion in 'iOS Apps' started by bogart, Aug 30, 2008.

  1. bogart macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2008
    #1
    I asked which is best a couple of days ago. Now I know, so I'm posting my experience for others.

    I tried the apps DataCase and Files and read about FileMagnet. Files comes out best in several ways

    1. With Files the directory structure is preserved and navigable on the touch/iphone. One can therefore easily mirror a tree of files on the mac and the touch/iphone - just drag and drop the tree and they will be in the same place on touch/iphone. A nice aspect of that is that files of different kinds that are together on the mac stay together on the touch/phone. With DataCase they appear in a "typed" global space - all images in one place, all docs in another etc. I am guessing, because of the way it works with a dedicated mac client that queues files for transfer, that FileMagnet also puts them in a global space.

    2. Files gives more screen space because the controls auto-hide. I use it to look at map images and the extra space helps a lot.

    3. Files uses webdav and therefore works with both Mac and Windows (and linux). I think that FileMagnet is mac-only (not tested). DataCase also can work with windows and linux.

    4. With DataCase, if the app (and therefore the webdav server) is running, the touch/phone does not go to sleep - unless one manually "sleeps" it the screen remains on. Files operates with the normal screen-saver/sleep mechanism. The screen staying on will use more battery but seems to me to be a very minor point.

    So Files therefore scores over both other apps on points 1 and 2, scores over FileMagnet on point 3. and scores over DataCase on point 4. I can find no way in which either DataCase or FileMagnet are better than Files (but note I did not test FileMagnet). If my guess that FileMagnet puts files in a global space is wrong then still Files scores over FileMagnet because it needs no dedicated client and also will work with other OS'es.

    Summary:

    Advantages of the Files app:

    1. preserves navigable tree
    2. more screen space
    3. works with mac, windows, linux
    4. works properly with sleeping

    None of the others have all of these. In my view Files is clearly the best one of the three apps.

    I hope this helps some people.

    bogart
     
  2. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2002
    Location:
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    #2
    I don't understand your point number 1.

    With FileMagnet if I drag a tree to the desktop app, it transfers that tree to the iPhone/Touch.

    What am I missing?
     
  3. Marky macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2005
    #3
    Actually you scored that the wrong way round on point 4, Files has the flaw whereby it keeps going to sleep when you certainly don't want it to, whereas Datacase keeps the iPhone 'awake' until your ready to close or sleep it.
     
  4. bogart thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2008
    #4
    @Sushi:
    Yes you are right (I said it was a guess), thankyou for correcting me. However, what you cannot do is move files around the tree on the phone/touch. And Files still scores on the other points.

    @Marky:
    Why would you want it not to go to sleep? I was amazed but the webdav server continues to run while it sleeps. This is contrary to the way I thought it worked but check it out - it really does. I read somewhere that app store apps can not run in the background. At least on my touch this program shows that either that is false or a program can be woken by an external service call over webdav. At first with the files app I was trying to work quickly before it went to sleep then I realised there was no need to - its much better than wasting battery life to just let it go to sleep (though you do have to remember to waken it and exit the program to stop the server rather than being reminded by its staying on).

    bogart
     
  5. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #5
    I see. Thanks.

    BTW, if you change the tree structure on the iPhone/Touch, can you transfer that back to the desktop to replace the existing tree?
     
  6. mattrobs macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2008
    #6
    You haven't stumbled onto a conspiracy or anything. When you lock (or it locks) the screen, the app stays open. Only when going to the Home Screen does it quit.

    Been looking for a review like this. Will have to check out Files.
     
  7. bogart thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2008
    #7
    @sushi:
    oops - just a slight misleading again from me. What one can do with with files is navigate the tree on the phone or move things around in the tree on the phone but while the phone is mounted on the mac or pc (the phone behaves like the filesystem that it is and looks like any other networked system in the finder). Moving files around directly on the phone - no, except for delete.

    bogart (which by the way means the one who had a gin joint not paintings on the wall of your convenience).
     
  8. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #8
    Thanks for the feedback. :)
     

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