If you are an iPhone or an iPad user and also a Windows admirer then you’d have definitely faced the issue in sharing files from an iOS device to your Windows PC or an Android smartphone. An iPhone is perfectly suited to the Apple ecosystem where things become really easy to manage across any Apple device. But unlike Android, there are some zigzag paths when you go cross-platform with an Apple device.
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There are many Apps or Applications available over the internet that claim to offer hassle-free file sharing from iOS devices to Windows PC or Android, but we need to make it clear that most of the applications are either bloatware or non-functional. Some other applications might not comply with your privacy. So the best way is to stick to official methods that are easy to use and there is no need for any third-party applications.
We have categorized the methods into three main types i.e. Online and Offline methods which basically focuses on the sharing files from iOS to PC environment. Another method is described for sharing files from iOS to Android using JioSwitch. We have named the methods to create a clear perception of the methods and to showcase which architecture is being used by which technologies.
Online Method: Cross-Platform
The online method uses cloud storage for the cross-platform availability of files. This method is generally useful for storing small files such as documents and images. For large files like lengthy videos, this method is not an ideal option as it would eat up a lot of your data as well as storage on the cloud. These are the most flexible methods and work for Windows, Android or any other platforms like Linux or ChromeOS.
A. Using iCloud
iCloud is Apple’s own cloud storage technology available to all Apple ID holders for an excellent cross-platform experience. Everything you store on iCloud is instantly available on any other device with iCloud logged in with the same Apple ID.
Here is how to share files from iPhone or iPad to PC using iCloud
- Download iCloud on your PC from Microsoft Store and sign in with your Apple ID.
- Now on your iPhone or iPad move the required files to the iCloud Drive in the ‘Files’ app.
- Now the files can be easily downloaded to your PC from the iCloud App.
B. Using Google Drive
Google Drive is very similar to iCloud, but one thing that makes it really useful is its web interface which is very simple to use and learn.
To use Google Drive for sharing files, you need to follow these steps:
- Download the Google Drive app on iPhone or iPad and sign in with your Google account (you can open google drive on browser too).
- Now upload files that you want to share with your PC or another Android device.
- Now open the drive in the browser in your PC and download the files you just uploaded.
The procedure for sharing files from an iOS device to an Android device using the cloud storage services is quite similar to the above-mentioned steps. You just need to use the same cloud service on both the devices to sync the files.
Offline Method: From iOS to Windows or Mac
A. For Photos and Videos
The media files such as photos and videos in iOS devices are by default stored in the iCloud and can be easily accessed from any Apple device using the same Apple ID making the access of media files extremely easy from Mac.
The method to share photos and videos is fairly simple as compared to files and documents, you just need to follow these simple steps.
- Connect your iPhone or iPad to your Mac or PC using the USB Cable and allow permissions for access on your iPhone or iPad.
- Open the Photos app on your Mac or PC and look for the ‘Import’ option (on the top right section in PC).
- Click on ‘Import’ to select the media files you want to import and proceed.
B. For Documents and Files
There are certain apps that store their files on the device rather than on iCloud. For such files, you can use the method mentioned below for fast and easy transfer of data or files.
For sharing files and documents from your iPhone or iPad to PC you can use the iCloud or Google Drive as they are fairly simple and wireless methods but if you have large files that are difficult to share via cloud storage then you can try the following method.
- Download iTunes on your Mac or PC from App Store or Microsoft Store.
- Connect your iPhone or iPad to your Mac or PC using a USB cable.
- Check the ‘Updates’ section in the Windows Settings app and wait for the driver installation to finish.
- Now open the iTunes app and select your device by clicking on the device icon at the top left section.
- Now from the left sidebar select ‘File Sharing’.
- Select the app whose files you want to transfer to your PC or Mac, next just drag and drop the file in the desired location.
Using JioSwitch: From iOS to Android or Android to iOS
Android and iOS are two different and versatile mobile ecosystems. However Android is much more common than iOS because of its flexibility and availability over various budget categories. It is sometimes challenging to find a quick way of sharing files from an iPhone or iPad to an Android device.
Files can be shared from an iPhone to an Android device by using a cross-platform, safe and trusted app on both the Android and iOS platforms. We recommend JioSwitch app for this as it is an Indian app built with priority on performance and privacy. JioSwitch can also be used to share files from Android to PC.
To share your files from an iPhone to Android using JioSwitch, you should follow the steps below:
- Download the JioSwitch app on both the Android and iOS devices.
- Now head to the device on which you want to receive files and click on ‘Receive’ button and expand the ‘Receive data from iPhone’ tab from the bottom.
- Now allow appropriate permissions to create hotspot and note down the credentials.
- Now turn on the device from which you want to send files, head over to Wi-Fi settings and connect to the hotspot created by the receiving device.
- Now on the Sender device click on the ‘Send’ button and select the files you want to share and confirm.
- That’s it! You are done and your files will be successfully transferred.
JioSwitch is a good app in terms of privacy too as it does not store any system permissions all the time and each time you initiate a file sharing request, it will ask for the permissions to access Wi-Fi and hotspot settings.
Please note that you will be able to receive files only on devices on which you can create Wi-Fi hotspot. So from certain Wi-Fi models of iPad, you will only be able to send files.
Problems with Most Third-Party Apps
As we mentioned earlier, there are many third-party applications available over the internet and other app stores that claim to be the ultimate file sharing app for iPhone and iPad, but there are very few which will really prove their points.
Many of them are paid applications too, we do not recommend any such applications or iOS apps as such applications may come with malicious codes and files that may break your system, steal your data, or personal information, and might increase your problems. So we urge you to stick to the tested methods while handling important files.
Hope you found our guide helpful. You might find our guide on how to create a bootable USB for Windows 10 in Ubuntu useful.
Do you trust third-party applications for important tasks? Put your thoughts and questions in the comment section below. You can reach out to us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, we are quite active on social media.