How to Save Documents from Anywhere to Files App on iPhone and iPad in iOS 11


Save to Files iOS 11

Files app in iOS 11 is a fully fledged, cloud enabled file system on your iPhone and iPad. Which means you can use it a bit like you use Finder on your Mac. Create different folders for saving and organizing different kinds of things like photos, PDFs, text files and more.

Previously, you’d just save a photo to the Camera Roll or a text file to Notes app and call it a day. But now Files app is here, you can create different folders for saving inspiration photos, PDFs for receipts and more. Plus, Files app already works with cloud storage services like iCloud Drive and Dropbox, so you don’t even need to change your workflow on other devices.

iOS 11 has a much improved Save to Files. It’s enabled by default, shows up everywhere, and is much better than iOS 10’s Save to iCloud Drive extension. We can use that and iOS 11’s drag and drop feature on the iPad to easily save any kind of document from anywhere directly to the Files app in just seconds.

1. Use Save to Files Extension

Step 1: Tap and hold on an image, or if you’re viewing a document, tap on the Share button.

Step 2: This will bring up the Share sheet. From the bottom row, tap on Save to Files.

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Step 3: A popup will show up, with a list of locations that you’ve added and enabled in the Files app. By default, this will be On my iPad and iCloud Drive.

iOS 11 Save to Files 4

Step 4: Select the folder where you want to save this file. Then tap on Add.

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The file will be saved to the location.

2. Use iOS 11’s Drag and Drop Feature on iPad

Sometimes, you just can’t bring up the share sheet for a file. Images on a web page in Safari are a prime example. In times like these, a simple drag and drop will do.

Step 1: First, open the Files app on your iPad in Split View (more about that here).

Step 2: Then, tap and hold on the file you want to add to the files app. In a second, it will lift up from the screen and a small preview will be attached below where your finger is.

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Step 3: Swipe to the Files app and drop the file in the folder you want to add it to.

If the file is in a compatible format (like images, PDF, text file), it will be saved to the folder in Files app.

Use Tags for Better File Organization

Now that you’ve got a folder structure going, use tags or pool in similar files from different folders. Tap and hold on a file and select Tags to get started.

What is your favorite new feature in Files app? How will you be using the app to organize your files and folders? Share with us in the comments below.

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