iPhone needs a common file storage & transfer API

Posted: September 14th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: iPhone | Tags: | Comments Off on iPhone needs a common file storage & transfer API

The iPhone API has one very big and very non Apple (e.g. inconsistent and unintuitive) behavior due to the lack of a common file storage API. Any application that will allow the user to access its files lacks any consistent method to transfer files and to share files.

This lack of a thought out API for files (other then an applications own files) and for any form of file transfer as resulted in the mess iPhone users find themselves in today. Applications might use a desktop client, or they might use a web server or an ftp server, all extra code that is completely different from one application to another.

The iPhone really needs a common file system, like the Newton’s “Soup”, that allows applications to access this common storage area that can be separate from the rest of the OS file system.

Because each application is “sandboxed” it can only view and act on its own files and on photos. The user should be able to transfer a file, say a PDF or a JPG, and any program that can read / write the file should be able to have access to it.

A common file system will also eliminate another problem, the potential loss of data when a user updates an application or has to delete it and then reinstall it.

The File System API should allow:

  • Bidirectional file transfers via iTunes (or other)
  • Allow files to be private to a specific program
  • Allow files to be available to any program
  • Backup separately from the rest of the iPhone backup process


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