Apple has traditionally tried to make its software as simple as possible for people, and that usually means hiding things the company thinks we don’t need to see.
iCloud Drive, for instance, is Apple’s cloud storage service that comes with every iPhone, iPad, and Mac. It works almost exactly like Dropbox, a competing cloud storage provider, and lets you save files to the cloud from apps like Microsoft Word and Apple’s Pages.
Both services allow you to access documents, photos, and other files from different devices as long as there’s an internet connection.
Now, Apple is taking a page out of Dropbox’s playbook by giving iCloud Drive its own app.
In the next version of Apple’s mobile software, which will come out later this year, you’ll be able to put iCloud Drive on the home screen. The app itself, which has to be enabled in the iPhone’s settings, looks a lot like Dropbox, and gives you a view of all the files and folders you have stored in the cloud.
Here’s what Apple’s iCloud Drive app looks like:
Previously, you could only manage files in iCloud Drive while saving or opening a document in another app. Now, there’s a central hub that lets you view, move, delete, or share files to other apps using Apple’s cloud service.
iCloud Drive provides 5GB of free storage — you can pay for more — while Dropbox only provides 2GB before requiring a paid upgrade.
iOS 9 won’t be ready for the public to download until sometime later this year, and there’s always a chance that this iCloud Drive app could be removed before then. But for now, it looks like Apple is going to finally manage our files more directly.