Finder for iOS?

Laurence Eckert

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 6, 2014
50
21
Wouldn't it be cool if iOS had Finder? Being able to access all files on your device from one File Manager. I think it would be really helpful for a lot of us. What do you guys think?
 

fullauto

macrumors 6502a
Oct 19, 2012
892
301
Brisbane
It would be welcomed. Packaging 'All my files' from OSX (with folder options) would be a good idea. iCloud Drive will have to do.
 

Small White Car

macrumors G4
Aug 29, 2006
10,905
1,182
Washington DC
Every time someone suggests changes that make Macs more like iOS people whine and complain about leaving the Mac alone.

The reverse is also true.

The lack of a Finder is one of iOS's strengths. Leave the Mac things to the Mac.
 

Nevaborn

macrumors 65816
Aug 30, 2013
1,078
312
File system is very easy to do for iOS and can be built in to spotlight, I have done some mockups in the past.

Apple are just stuck in the old mentality where we dont need access to file systems and apps are the best way.... it's why we end up with 10 apps for 1 job because giving up 1 encompassing function would give the user too much control over the system and we are deemed too stupid to be allowed that.
 

haydn!

macrumors 65816
Nov 10, 2008
1,013
965
UK
File system is very easy to do for iOS and can be built in to spotlight, I have done some mockups in the past.

Apple are just stuck in the old mentality where we dont need access to file systems and apps are the best way....
That mentality, and the lack of file share between apps is one of iOS's biggest strengths. It helps make the system very secure.

Plus, mocking something up is a whole lot easier than actually making it happen securely and efficiently.
 

MisakixMikasa

macrumors 6502a
Aug 21, 2013
776
2
Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
That mentality, and the lack of file share between apps is one of iOS's biggest strengths. It helps make the system very secure.

Plus, mocking something up is a whole lot easier than actually making it happen securely and efficiently.
Windows phone is getting a file browser and ability to share files between apps...yet it is secure
 

CosmoPilot

macrumors 65816
Nov 8, 2010
1,423
86
South Carolina
If iCloud drive allows me to organize files in the cloud using my iOS device, I'll be happy. I don't really have a need to have any file stored locally considering all the potential for data loss/theft, etc.

I understand you can back up through iTunes, but if the file is that sensitive it's probably best left on the Mac.

iCloud drive (if it does what Apple says) is gonna be huge for a number of reasons.
1. I'll no longer need a 64GB device (iTunes, Photos, Files) all uploaded in the cloud.
2. All file types supported. Not just the iWorks apps. With the iCloud web address, you can even use Windows if needed.
3. Theft protection. As soon a thief makes off with an iDevice, log into a computer and change/secure your cloud storage. (This assumes the crook can't crack your passcode/Touch ID within the 1st few hours)
4. Scalability. If you need more storage, you don't need to wait for Apple to release a larger capacity iDevice. Just purchase more cloud storage.

I for one am hoping it does what it says it will. So yeah, a Finder for iCloud Drive is all I really need.
 

mohdamerul

macrumors regular
Aug 10, 2012
147
24
Kuala Lumpur
Every time someone suggests changes that make Macs more like iOS people whine and complain about leaving the Mac alone.

The reverse is also true.

The lack of a Finder is one of iOS's strengths. Leave the Mac things to the Mac.
hi Tim. it's good to see you here. that's why Macrumors keeps getting log that's indicate unreleased iOS version that visited this site from Apple.
 

matttye

macrumors 601
Mar 25, 2009
4,956
30
Lincoln, England
Every time someone suggests changes that make Macs more like iOS people whine and complain about leaving the Mac alone.

The reverse is also true.

The lack of a Finder is one of iOS's strengths. Leave the Mac things to the Mac.
Disagree completely.

Apple keeps working around the filesystem, rather than implementing the obvious and the familiar, age old, tried and tested method of handling files. These workarounds actually end up being more complicated than a filesystem itself.

For example. If I want to send two documents to someone in an e-mail, I need to install a third party app for that. That is anything but simple.
 

charlituna

macrumors G3
Jun 11, 2008
9,631
815
Los Angeles, CA
Wouldn't it be cool if iOS had Finder? Being able to access all files on your device from one File Manager. I think it would be really helpful for a lot of us. What do you guys think?
This is an issue that is brought up constantly. The geeks, nerds etc that hang out on a site like this would say yes it would be cool and helpful. Some of them would go so far as to say that is in fact vital and iOS devices will never be more than a toy until this feature is included. No real work is possible without this feature

But for the other 95% it is not only not vital it could be dangerous. Many of these are the same folks with no clue of how to use their computers, with no concept of what the Finder is or how to use it and thus have every file on the desktop in a total mess. They are the same folks that caused Apple to hide the Library folder lest these uneducated tinkerers continue to screw up their computers mucking around in places they shouldn't be. These folks merely need to be able to do their tasks and that can be done via the apps.

If one were to really consider the notion and ask why would such access be needed for everyone (not just the geeks) the issue of easier file sharing and reducing duplicates comes up. Which is solved by iCloud Drive or could be. No Finder needed

----------

Yeah, who wants to access their content from their phone anyways?
Unless you can read The Matrix you need an app to see the content anyway. So really what is the big deal about accessing the app first and then the content.

----------

Apple are just stuck in the old mentality where we dont need access to file systems and apps are the best way....
More like Apple wasn't designing for you but for the much much larger horde of customers that don't need that access.

Time to let it go. Apple is likely to stick with their 'for the 95%‘ mentality for the foreseeable future. Feel free to design your own smart phone etc with your own OS just for the geeks. I'm sure they will flock to it.
 

tmanto02

macrumors 65816
Jun 5, 2011
1,146
328
Australia
Yeah, who wants to access their content from their phone anyways?
Me...and many others. However I think it's Apple's view that they don't want to over complicate iOS...and fair enough. If the more advanced users still desire file management - they are smart enough to learn how to jailbreak and install iFile.
 

MattInOz

macrumors 68030
Jan 19, 2006
2,760
0
Sydney
What access do you want that's not covered by the Extensions API?

added: Quote from Apple iOS what's new
Storage Provider

You can now provide a document storage location that can be accessed by other apps. Apps that use a document picker view controller can open files managed by the storage provider or move files into the storage provider.

Document Picker

The document picker view controller grants your users access to files outside your app’s sandbox. Documents are easily shared between apps, enabling users to edit a single document in multiple places.
 

TheRainKing

macrumors 6502a
Jun 11, 2012
999
534
You guys live in the stone age. Part of the reason iOS has been successful is because they hide things like the file system. What's wrong with using apps to get to your content?
 

Syndicate0017

macrumors 6502
May 3, 2013
405
0
Finder for iOS?

This is an issue that is brought up constantly. The geeks, nerds etc that hang out on a site like this would say yes it would be cool and helpful. Some of them would go so far as to say that is in fact vital and iOS devices will never be more than a toy until this feature is included. No real work is possible without this feature



But for the other 95% it is not only not vital it could be dangerous. Many of these are the same folks with no clue of how to use their computers, with no concept of what the Finder is or how to use it and thus have every file on the desktop in a total mess. They are the same folks that caused Apple to hide the Library folder lest these uneducated tinkerers continue to screw up their computers mucking around in places they shouldn't be. These folks merely need to be able to do their tasks and that can be done via the apps.

This argument I don't really understand. Why is android capable of developing a file manager WITHOUT access to the root file system, but apple isn't? All we need access to is the documents, photos, and the like directories. It's not user friendly to have to download a 3rd party app to accomplish such a simple task (like attaching multiple files to an email).
 

danielceleste

macrumors regular
Jun 16, 2012
210
6
Perhaps a developer could enlighten us, since I could be wrong in making this assumption, but couldn't someone develop a "Finder" for iOS 8? Sure, it wouldn't allow access to everything, but I mean an app that simply acts as a portal to one's iCloud Drive, just showing the new document picker.

In other words, I'm trying to envision an app that would essentially be like the current Dropbox, Google Drive, or OneDrive apps, but for iCloud Drive, built off of the APIs Apple provides for being able to pick things out of iCloud Drive.

I really hope someone (if not Apple) makes that, again, if it's possible.
 

Small White Car

macrumors G4
Aug 29, 2006
10,905
1,182
Washington DC
Yeah, who wants to access their content from their phone anyways?
hi Tim. it's good to see you here. that's why Macrumors keeps getting log that's indicate unreleased iOS version that visited this site from Apple.
Have you both not noticed that the Mac is doing everything in its power to let you rely on the Finder less?

Improved Spotlight. Smart tags. iCloud documents.

Folders are old news around Apple these days. Have either of you tried Final Cut X? That's an extremely eye-opening example of how Apple views the future of file management and it doesn't involve folders and file trees. I can certainly list the problems with FCX too, but file management is one of its surprising victories.

In light of the fact that Apple is gently pushing the Mac away from such things I find it hard to believe they'd take the opposite view with iOS and start moving it back towards them.

But for the other 95% it is not only not vital it could be dangerous.
I can not count the number of times I've had this conversation over the past 20 years:

Me: Where did you save the file?
Other Person: [blank stare]


I am thrilled beyond belief that I don't have to have this conversation with iPad users.

Do I want iOS to gain more abilities? Absolutely. But I'm happy to see Apple continue to come up with inter-app APIs and other brand new solutions for that rather than to shoe-horn in a 30-year-old idea that was well suited to computer experts and very few other people.
 
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iolinux333

macrumors 68000
Feb 9, 2014
1,798
73
This is an issue that is brought up constantly. The geeks, nerds etc that hang out on a site like this would say yes it would be cool and helpful. Some of them would go so far as to say that is in fact vital and iOS devices will never be more than a toy until this feature is included. No real work is possible without this feature

But for the other 95% it is not only not vital it could be dangerous. Many of these are the same folks with no clue of how to use their computers, with no concept of what the Finder is or how to use it and thus have every file on the desktop in a total mess. They are the same folks that caused Apple to hide the Library folder lest these uneducated tinkerers continue to screw up their computers mucking around in places they shouldn't be. These folks merely need to be able to do their tasks and that can be done via the apps.

If one were to really consider the notion and ask why would such access be needed for everyone (not just the geeks) the issue of easier file sharing and reducing duplicates comes up. Which is solved by iCloud Drive or could be. No Finder needed

----------



Unless you can read The Matrix you need an app to see the content anyway. So really what is the big deal about accessing the app first and then the content.

----------



More like Apple wasn't designing for you but for the much much larger horde of customers that don't need that access.

Time to let it go. Apple is likely to stick with their 'for the 95%‘ mentality for the foreseeable future. Feel free to design your own smart phone etc with your own OS just for the geeks. I'm sure they will flock to it.
I am sick of the argument that iOS is for stupid people so it should not add normal features of normal operating systems that stupid people have been using since the 1950's.
 

MattInOz

macrumors 68030
Jan 19, 2006
2,760
0
Sydney
I am sick of the argument that iOS is for stupid people so it should not add normal features of normal operating systems that stupid people have been using since the 1950's.
I'm personally sick of the argument that because we did it that way to suit the computer for 30years we can't have nice things in the future or now.

Finder (on the Mac) is built on the idea of a bunch of floppies sitting on your desk waiting for the computer to ask for them. It's had a whole bunch of technology grafted in from hard drives, LAN, WAN, Internet, SSD & now Cloud. For the most part not very well grafted either. Seriously it's time to stick a fork in it, it's done.
 

Eso

macrumors 68000
Aug 14, 2008
1,754
106
Have you both not noticed that the Mac is doing everything in its power to let you rely on the Finder less?
...
Folders are old news around Apple these days.
Finder and organizing files into are not equivalent. None of the other features like spotlight search are mutually exclusive with Finder.

In light of the fact that Apple is gently pushing the Mac away from such things I find it hard to believe they'd take the opposite view with iOS and start moving it back towards them.
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Apple seems to be using plenty of folders in iCloud Drive. They also exclusively use folders in their document-based iOS apps such as iWork.

I can not count the number of times I've had this conversation over the past 20 years:

Me: Where did you save the file?
Other Person: [blank stare]
That's so true, yet the fact remains that the file has to be stored somewhere. Saving it within the app isn't a very good place for a number of reasons. You lose your documents if you remove the app. You can't organize different file types together even when that makes the most sense, such as saving the images and spreadsheet together with a report in which they appear. You can't implement a collaborative method for several people to work on the same project files.

How hard would it be, for example, to save all documents into a common, unsorted documents area instead of within the app? When you open the app, it shows you the same thing as it does now - all your recent documents related to that app - but now the user has the additional option of organizing their documents however they like within Finder.

Easy.
 
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