Have you ever taken the “iPad Challenge”? The goal is to go to some work-oriented event and get everything done using only your phone and iPad. Many college students and convention-goers have tried and failed at this task, begging the question: is the iPad really a work device?
Documents by Readdle puts one check in the iOS device’s favor by adding a file sorting environment similar to what you would get on a traditional computing device. Version 5.0 of the software has honed it for iOS 7 and made the overall experience less jarring while moving from content consumption to creation. The app’s flat and intuitive design makes getting work done simple and even puts the services it relies on to shame when it comes to going from starting the app to editing a document.
You can open a word document or spreadsheet from Documents’ homepage and the service comes with the essential features for doing either. While not as robust as Microsoft Word, the word processor is enough for putting down some thoughts or editing a presentation you put together from home. The work tools provided in Pages are a good comparison to draw but Documents just seems more lightweight and fast than Apple’s offering on the latest generation of iOS devices. There is also a built in browser for double-checking news sources before filing that report; all without leaving the app.
What’s more impressive is Documents’ cloud implementation. After logging in, users can pull documents or images saved from popular storage options like Google Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive and iCloud. Enterprise or other savvy users can also make use of the FTP Server client built into the app to pull files directly from their business or home networks. Once set up, your files on those services are just a few taps away.
Instead of editing the version of the file saved in the cloud, Documents downloads the file so you can handle it all in the app without worrying about random disconnects from Google Drive or some other service. While I found this convenient, it could annoy some to have to save the newly edited version back to the cloud after making their desired changes. It should also be said that although Documents supports viewing virtually any file (.zip, .rar, .pages, .bmp, .mp3, .wav, .html, .doc and .ppt just to name a few), it only supports editing .rtf and .txt word files. So keep that in mind when saving to the cloud!
Documents also supports basic organization features such as creating folders, sorting according to various parameters and other typical file management tools. The app can be used for productivity or just setting up a workout playlist outside of the music app and range like that is difficult to come by on the app store. Bringing all of your cloud content to one place alone makes this free, universal app almost essential for the fledgling iOS business type—just don’t forget to save when you’re done.
Documents is an iOS app made by Readdle that can be downloaded for free from the App Store.