Written by Gijs

How do I use the Files app on my iPad or iPhone?

I like to have my files always and everywhere within reach. Fortunately, there is the Files app for that. In this app I collect all my files and save them in the cloud. I even add files from other cloud providers such as Dropbox. This way, I have all my files conveniently arranged and in one place, on all my devices. Here you can read how I set and organize this.

Before I start

iOS Files app

To use Files there are a number of things that I take into account.

  • I ensure that my iPhone and iPad have iOS11 or higher.
  • iCloud is set and iCloud Drive is enabled.
  • I check if I am logged in on all my devices with the same Apple ID.

When this is all correct, I use Files.

Add apps

Add apps in the Files app

In Files I add files from other apps such as Dropbox and Google Drive. This way I have my photos and files in one place.

  • For example, I download Dropbox and set this app on my iPad.
  • Now I open the Files app.
  • I tap Locations → Change*.
  • I tap the slider next to Dropbox.
  • Finally, I tap Done. Now I also have access to my Google Drive files in the Files app.

Organize files

Move iCloud Drive files

Move iCloud Drive files

Move iCloud Drive files On iPad, moving files is easy.

  • I open the Files app.
  • Now I tap Select and tap the file that I want to move.
  • Then I choose the folder where I want to move the file.
Move files from the cloud of other apps

Move files from the cloud of other apps

  • I open the Files app and open the file that I want to move.
  • Then I click on Share or the symbol with the square and arrow at the top right of the screen.
  • Then I click on Copy.
  • Now I open the folder where I want the file.
  • I press hard on the screen and choose Paste from the options.

Tags and labels

Add a tag

Add a tag

I add tags to bundle files quickly and clearly. For example, I tag files that I need for a project on work Work.

  • I open the folder that contains the files that I want to tag.
  • Then I tap Select and choose the file.
  • Now I click on Share and + Tag.
  • I choose the * Work * tag.
Change tags

Change tags

  • In the Files app, go to Locations and tap Change.
  • I tap the name of an existing tag.
  • I then enter a name for the tag.
  • I press Done and save the changed name.

Create new folder

Create new folder
  • I go to Locations in the Files app.
  • Now I click on the cloud facility where I want to add a folder. For example Google Drive.
  • I swipe down on the screen with the files.
  • Then I tap on the folder with the plus symbol.
  • Finally, I enter the name of the new folder and click on Done.

Share and edit files

Share and edit files

I share files with friends and colleagues via Files. I also work with colleagues on the same file. To share a file:

  • I tap Select and the file I want to share in the Files app.
  • Then I tap Share and choose how I want to share the file. For example via AirDrop-, Messages or Mail. Working together:
  • I open a Keynote, Numbers or Keynote document. Now I tap Share and Add people.
  • I send the invitation via Messages or Mail.

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