Windows Phone started out as a very weak operating system. It was so full of compromises and disappointments, that it was a wonder anyone bought the devices. When Nokia started manufacturing handsets with the OS, it was a real turning point. The Finnish company eventually added amazing tweaks, apps and class-leading cameras. Nokia was so important to the Windows Phone movement, that Microsoft eventually bought the company.
Luckily, besides Nokia, Microsoft was also in the kitchen cooking up improvements for the mobile operating system. The company released Windows Phone 8.1 to developers this year and the changes are staggering. You see, Microsoft is actually listening to users and the end result is a much more capable OS. Unfortunately, Windows Phone 8.1 was still missing a crucial aspect -- a native File Manager. Today, that changes as Microsoft releases the unimaginatively named 'Files'.
"We all encounter a number of files in our daily lives across the various devices we use. And often times we need ways to manage these files and share them with others -- even on our phones. We've heard your feedback loud and clear that managing files needs to be easier to do on your Windows Phone and Joe Belfiore announced earlier this month during a Reddit AMA that we would address your feedback with an official file manager app. Today, we are releasing that app. It's called Files and it makes it easy and intuitive to manage your files on your device running Windows Phone 8.1", says Brandon LeBlanc, Microsoft.
LeBlanc further explains, "the Files app allows you to access all the files stored on your phone. If your phone supports expandable memory with an SD card, like the Lumia 1520, you can use the Files app to access files on the SD card as well. You can browse through files and folders, open and search for files that are on the phone or on SD card storage. You can create new folders and arrange your files across those folders using move and copy functions and you can also rename and delete your files. And you also have the ability to share one or many files on your phone with your friends, family or work colleagues".
Microsoft lists the following features:
- Access files stored on your phone and SD card
- Browse, search and launch files
- Easily share one file or multiple files
- Create folders to organize your files
- Copy, move, rename and delete files
Make no mistake, this app is a huge deal as it erases one of the operating system's flaws. Sadly, it currently requires Windows Phone 8.1 -- users of devices with an older version of the OS are out of luck. The good news though, is that while not all Windows Phones have SD card slots, Microsoft chose to support external memory with the app too.
If you are interested in trying the app and your phone is running the pre-release version of Windows Phone 8.1, you can download it here. Give it a try and tell me how you like it in the comments.