How to Store Files on an iPad mini

Ecamm Network sells a piece of OS X software, PhoneView ($29.95), which lets you copy files from your Mac to your iPad mini and copy files from the mini to a Mac. (No Windows version is available.) Better still, you can try the program for a week before deciding whether you want to buy it. Go to www.ecamm.com to fetch the free demo.

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The big deal here is that while automatic backups protect most of the files on your iPad mini, there’s no way to manipulate them. They’re backed up and restored, but heaven help you if you want to extract one or more individual iMessages, specific songs, videos, notes, or other types of data from your iPad mini. The bottom line is that there’s no easier way than PhoneView.

In a nutshell, here’s how PhoneView works. After downloading the software to your Mac, double-click the program’s icon to start it. Then do one of the following:

  • To transfer files and folders to the iPad mini (assuming that you have room on the device), click the Copy to iPad button on the toolbar and then select the files you want to copy. The files are copied into the appropriate folder on the iPad. Alternatively, you can drag files and folders from the Mac Desktop or a folder into the PhoneView browser.

  • To go the other way and copy files from your iPad mini to your computer, highlight the files or folders you want to be copied and then click the Copy from iPad button on the toolbar. Select the destination on your Mac where you want to store the files, and then click Save.

    You can also drag files and folders from the PhoneView file browser onto the Mac Desktop or folder. Or you can double-click a file in the PhoneView browser to download it to your Mac’s Documents folder.

If you need access to the files on your iPad or if you want to use your iPad as a pseudo–hard drive, PhoneView is a bargain.