Windows Phone 8.1 gets official file manager

Windows Phone 8.1 is so full of surprises and opens the Windows Phone faithful up to a new world of apps. Video editors and file managers are just some of the new app categories possible thanks to Windows Phone 8.1. We’ve seen an official video editing app from Microsoft already, but today we finally get Files – the official file manager for Windows Phone.


Files is a free app for managing all the files on Windows Phone. We learned about the app when Joe Belfiore did an AMA on Reddit earlier this month. It was announced for a May release, but we later leaned it would be called Files and coming in June. The name was right, however the app is now live for you to download not in June, but in May.  


Here’s the set of features we get in this version 1.0 release:

  • Access files stored on your phone and SD card
  • Browse, search and launch files
  • Easily share one file or multiple files
  • Create folders to organize your files
  • Copy, move, rename and delete files

With Files you can access your phones documents, downloads, music, pictures, pictures and more. It doesn’t matter if it’s on your SD card or on you’re the internal phone storage, Files can handle it all. We’ve spent a few minutes playing around with Files and really like it. It’s basic, but gets the job done.


We’ll have a hands-on with Files shortly. In the meantime, grab the app and let us know what you think!

Via: Windows Phone Blog

Thanks for the tip everyone! 

QR: files



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James8561 says:

this shall silent all the complainers. even though i'm against having to do file management on a phone, 116k people wants it and it's cool that they got their way. It's great that others who don't want it don't have to face it.

infosage says:

Good deal! It's getting harder for other OS to claim any advantages.

tkdmacgeek says:

About fucking time!

Hola Amigos says:

This OS is like wine, it keeps getting better with time...

morete908 says:

Yeah, but even Paul Masson had enough sense to not sell his wine before its time.

herbertsnow says:

You need to get out more.

But they completely failed by not allowing this to integrate with the Mail app for attaching files. Huge fail. Typical MS.

ricke424 says:

Those apps will likely be updated too to work with it. Soon, and very soon.

I hope so. I just haven't seen anything to indicate the Mail app would be updated. I guess I'm not sure which app or part of the OS would need to be updated for this but they need to figure it out ASAP...

ricke424 says:

I think it's because of 8.1 this is possible. The core 8.1 OS added File Picker API. It's probable that WP7/8 users can't install this app. We'll see. All apps will need to be updated to use this feature. I'm not a fan of this type of app but it's ok to be available for those who need it.

neo158 says:

Right, so in a first release you're expecting MS to integrate the kitchen sink?

lippidp says:

Kitchen sink? A file manage has been a basic component of all operating systems for fucken ever.

IlkkaV says:

Well, iOS still doesn't have one and it's doing quite fine regardless of that.

lippidp says:

LOL, really? How sad for them. I certainly expect more from Microsoft than I do Apple regardless of the current market share situation.

absolutshame says:

Neither does Android.

ymcpa says:

those operating sytems ran on hardware that had a ton of internal and external storage to manage. this is a phone. very few people are using it for file storage. it's mostly multimedia files that can be managed from apps that play those files. this gives another option, but i doubt most users will use it.

Attaching files to emails should have been in WP7... we're now onto WP8.1 three years later and it's still not an option. I hardly say this is a first release request for the whole kitchen sink...

dem224 says:

I guess I'm a bit confused. You can share files through email from the Files app. You want to attach through the email app as opposed to the Files app then? Seems like something that would be a reasonable request though for now you can go to the file app, press and hold, share and select the email account you want.

Just for a new email. And for reply?

Dare2Blink says:

What are you talking about, you can attach any file or files through the files manager. Yes you can't reply to an email and add a document for some odd reason, but that's hardly a train smash since you can find the files you want to attach through the files manager and attach it there. Stop bitching already ggg some people are never happy.

darkoman4 says:

If you really want to get into business world then simple attachment of documents in mail app is a must. in Blackberry you can attach a file to a mail from phone, sd card, dropbox, One drive, Box, your pc or Mac at home even though you are away from them.

lippidp says:

Oh, that's a shame...

Why exactly are you try to attache? who does that anymore when you can simply share a link through OneDrive? I am not saying that no one needs a file manager but it is not necessary when it comes to sharing especially for picture and othe stuff.

I guess people are used to it on the desktop and they want it on the phone now.

Tense says:

"who does that anymore when you can simply share a link through OneDrive?"

It's just a matter of preference. And a reasonable one. A lot of people don't utilize cloud yet, and for good reason, so the ability to create traditional attachments in an email isn't too much to ask of MS. It's not like an attachment feature is gonna destroy their vision for the cloud and OneDrive, so really there's no excuse for the feature to be absent, especially this far into the platform's life.

Dare2Blink says:

You can attach any file or files you want through the file manager. Just select and share, simple...

BCH says:

A lot of my corporate clients cannot download anything from a link in an email. IT policy prohibits it. They can receive attachments, though.

em1ke says:


So true!

I suggest you voice your interesting suggestion concerning the integration with the Mail app at the excellent WINDOWS PHONE FEEDBACK PAGE AT

hugheshilton says:

I made a UserVoice for making the Files app a share target so you could copy stuff locally from OneDrive.  I don't really care that much about attachments, but you are right that someone should go make a UserVoice request for that as well.  In the meantime, vote for my UserVoice here!

jsvb1977 says:

Hmmm. Never thought of that email integration. I sent them feedback suggesting OneDrive integration (move files from phone to OneDrive, for example) as well as the ability to extract zipped files.

ArisKarneris says:

What do you mean? You can attach files by long pressing on them...

ahmu86 says:

We have been spoiled by the nokia symbians we used 5 to 10 years back which had file managers...

adrian1338 says:

Or simply by windows mobiles phones which had everything except of touchfriendly gui

Residing says:

Nokia definitely made file sharing a breeze on my N8 - I once worked with a developer on their app, and I was able to send screen shots of the bugs in the app via email - the first email I was able to attach three screen shots!  The thread was long, but it was one email thread!


While I don't have an immediate use for attaching files, I would expect to be able to reply to and attach as many files (be it Word, Excel, PDF, picture, mp3, or screen shots) as necessary in one email thread instead of having to create new email just to send different files.

Mestiphal says:

I do like the fact that it's an optional download.  I don't care about it, I don't have ot install it.

But why wouldn't they just add the local file manager to the OneDrive app.  it basically already does the same thing, and in Windows 8 it's a one app for both.

Tense says:

Probably so a distinction between local storage and cloud storage is kept in tack. To prevent confusion.

Munkeyphyst says:

While I agree I don't want to be fussing with file management, it's currently the only way to access the full resolution images on my 1020. Finally.

kenzibit says:

Yaaaayyyy....thank Goodness. Finally!

nicolas_as says:

I didn´t mind not having one, but that was until i had to send a file as an attachment on an email and outlook app only show photos for attachment and that drove me nuts.

That was the first thing that i tested on this file manager, and it is really good.
I think that this app will be very usefull to other apps too, if you could call it whenever you need something from the storage, or to give the choice to the user to choose where to store something from your app.

As you pointed out, shouldn't be against it because you don't "have to face it". But tell me this: how would you send multiple songs and photos to a friend through Bluetooth? How about dealing with files your phone doesn't recognize at all?

What I don't get is the obsession and enthusiasm with which some deny the need for file management systems, just because Apple decided it was unnecessary. They also think their phones shouldn't be compatible with global standards, and that people should buy extra memory for a huge amount of money.

kevC4D says:

It's nice and fast too! Too bad Xbox Music can't load artist names as fast as this thing can.

FacilisDK says:

I just noticed that too. It's amazingly fast at listing a few thousand files.

Tyradius says:

I can finally make a folder for my hiking pictures and move them all there. Yay! I know the phone isn't the best place to keep them but they're also in the cloud. It was a pain having loads of pictures in the camera roll, now I can organize them into albums properly. Huzzah

wpguy says:

I'm just glad I now have a way to access and delete the files I downloaded from the browser, without having to connect my phone to a computer.

Downloaded it. I want to see what all the fuss is about.

poddie says:

I agree, great solution. Making it an optional app is perfect. 99% of users will have no need for this, so don't make them think they will need it by pre installing.

amir zeinali says:

Its. Good but i cant find my .flv blutoothed files. Why? Microsoft should do something

glassadam says:

I also don't have a need for it, but the beauty part is that you don't "have to do file management on your phone," but if you need to or want to, now you can. :)

go1020 says:

I'd like to see a much easier way to organize my pictures into folders/albums. Just show me the thumb nails instead of full file name to select a bunch of them.

iyae says:

Shh you. Just zip it.

pLUSpISTOL says:

How can he when it has no support for zipping files?!

TLRtheory says:

Well, it's been fun Aerize, but the time has come to part ways.

DreadVenom says:

Same thoughts. It was great and has v.good UI.

anirban130 says:

Now wp has become a smartphone... Well done, fantabulous job

Seems fantabulous

theefman says:

Still can't attach docs directly to emails. Perfect for business. /s

smh. MS, you suck.

gwinegarden says:

What's your favourite whine?

asylumxl says:

I managed it. Select multiple doc files. Share. Select the account, done.

Just for a new email. And for reply?

Dare2Blink says:

So you expect a beta app on day one to do everything 100%... Seriously dude. Not saying that being able to attach documents from the mail app should not have been there from day one, but now that the steps to get there are finally being taken why complain? At least wait for the app to come out of beta. And seriously what is the diference between replying to an email and creating a new one with the attached file you want? 5 more seconds at the most.

mpt15 says:

How about when you reply to emails?

mpt15 says:

Well then, its not much of a file manager. Hopefully an update to the mail app can fix this. It's pure speculation but I hope it becomes possible soon. Fingers crossed.

asylumxl says:

Thing is that would down to changes in the email client itself and not a file manager.

TechFreak1 says:

I've been using wp8 since launch and I can tell you really don't use your phone for work at all. I have been using OneDrive for collab projects, property inspections etc. In this day an age of limited data its literally not possible to send multiple large files to clients. Unless you like using unsecured Wi Fi hotspots for sending data. OneDrive makes it so much easier as you don't have to deal with multiple files, people not putting relevant subject heading. A link is only a few bytes and thus is much more easier to send/receive.

asylumxl says:

We use it for spreadsheets at work. A link can also be opened from multiple places and updated. Much more productive.

TechFreak1 says:

It really is and it shows well to clients which is the major upsale. Especially older clients who have vast sums of money but not really in touch with tech.

Iain_S says:

I can attach files to my emails from the office program itself. I'm sure there will be an update to the mail client coming this year too

dKp1977 says:

Very well for app and blazing fast. Only downside for me so far is that you can't swipe through pictures.

DJCBS says:

It has a "move" option so to me it's good enough. Add more viewing options and it will be done as far as I go.

TheCudder says:

Excited to see this finally added.

joanzen says:

OMG! It's like Christmas came early! Well, that may be overstating it a bit, but it is pretty nice!

palaudawg says:

I really like these Friday releases.

Downloaded and shared even though I really don't see the need for a file manager on a phone...

Munkeyphyst says:

Well, maybe we didn't need a file manager, but this app is currently the only way to access the full resolution images on my 1020.


colinkiama says:

So belfiore did keep his promise, it did come 'later' this month

wpguy says:

It arrived a day early!

prabu d says:

Finally I can share files from videos folder, I can share multiple songs at a time... Well done

Sahil Kutty says:

Finally an official file manager... Even though I don't use it, but still its good to have one

MS should implement attachment files for reply e-mail with Files. It will be the first OS to do that.

msirapian says:

You can do it in Symbian. But I agree that it's missing and, from a productivity/office point of view, they should correct it quickly to reinforce their Office strength (I think WP is the best mobile OS for business).

darkoman4 says:

First OS? So Blackberry doesn't exist anymore? I should get rid of my Q10

Wow... 1.5gb of screenshots. I need to do some spring cleaning.

pLUSpISTOL says:

so many nude snapchats.. i mean, wat

ricke424 says:

This is exactly what this type of app is useful for. though you shouldn't need it on a phone. It's not like windows 7 when your drive is full and performance is affected.

Dare2Blink says:

It is very usefull for other thing besides deleting files... moving files around, creating folders, renaming files, etc

iamakii says:

File-nally! I swear WP apps should replace Windows apps.

ajit920 says:

Have been using pocket manager.. But using official app is fun isn't it ..;)

nelsonecm says:

Some of the new apps in 8.1 support file picker, when you want to select a file under the three dots appears the option to choose location, I don't know why it is so hidden, also it should be available at the email client. Don't get me wrong I'm not complaining, I hate the people that used to say that WP wouldn't succeed without a file manager, but it should be easier to find to the "normal people".

abdo_nasser says:

Can I finally copy music files to "Ringtones"?

mpt15 says:

If you need to make ringtones, use Nokias ringtone maker app. Then you dont need to move files around to different folders

abdo_nasser says:

I have HTC 8X, I don't get access to Nokia apps, that's why I need to move files around

mpt15 says:

Sorry. My bad.

Nice, I dont even remember wanting a file manager but its cool to have, windows 8.1 baby lets go

IceDree says:

Awesome ! I don't really need a file manager, but gonna download it anyway :)

Salamy says:

Finally I'm just now ready to go back to Windows Phone, I couldn't manage without file manager, so I got back to Android, but for now I believe Windows Phone is a complete smart OS.

absolutshame says:

Since when did android have an integrated file manager?

Sean D. says:

I still say it's unnecessary in WP, with one exception... if it connects directly to OneDrive then it's a great thing. If not... well, not so much.


You can share with one drive! :)

And hey, choice is good - you may not ever need it but you will miss it if you do lol

Why can't I share a picture through File to WhatsApp? :(

Maybe when whatsapp officially returns to the store you will be able to ;)

Not sure about that.

It's great and looks beautiful. I love the breadcrumbs on top. The file picker of 8.1 should be replaced by this app!


Now wp is a real Enterprise tool, and my 1520 is a proper mobile computer! I wish my 1020 had an sd card that could enjoy this!

Well done for listening ms! I loved wm6.5 - I hope wp gets winrar.

And yes, you can share with one drive!

Thank you Microsoft ;)

RaRa85 says:

I'm glad I'm not one of the many waiting around for the official 8.1 update to roll out. They are really missing out.

Very quick, probably won't use it but if you do.. fill your boots.

No email reply support is a pisser though - hope that comes next.

dedracer says:

Okay, now where's WhatsApp?

spaulagain says:

WhatsApp has been around for a while. The fact that idiots like you have to keep asking about it just because they took it down temporarily to fix a bug, is really pathetic. It will be back, get over it.

IceDree says:

Can we please have one article without mentioning WhatsApp?

absolutshame says:

Who cares? Use Kik or just send the damn message thru...i don't know... thru an actual text.

herbertsnow says:

whatsapp is dead. I killed it.

spaulagain says:

This guy = HAPPY

Richard_Indy says:

That's a heck of a version number:

hulk_14 says:

It is not integrated  with OS, there is no possibility to move folders, many things to improve. I hope that it would be integrated with music apps.

ebradley says:

A much needed thing to be able to delete multiple music files/ folders from the phone.

IceDree says:

You don't need a file manager to delete multiple audio tracks at once, from the music app press the left side of the track's title to activate Multi-Select, then hit (...) & choose delete.
I don't know about the folders though, I use the desktop app to handle music on my 8X

The email reply support seems missing. Hope they don't take three years addressing this ;)

elitelibra says:

I'm so glad I love this idea. The first mainstream OS with this option.

absolutshame says:

Shhh.....idiots seem to think Android has this, smh.

Davestrada says:

Theres a new update for Facebook Beta! Notice any change?

FFugue says:

I hope it's working properly now, the previous version would send me notifications only when it wanted to, which was about once a week or less.

dedracer says:

spaulagain, I didn't asked you about it, so stfu and be quite ! You're no one to tell me all this sh*t! Don't try to be smart ! Keep this with you! I don't need it ! *slap*

Akuji_ism says:

Does any of third-party file manages offer some unique features which 'FIles' app doesn't?

IceDree says:

I think Pocket Explorer have OneDrive integration.

Just curious and a tad clueless, but why do we need a file manager, especially for phones without microSD, like the 920?

FFugue says:

To manage downloaded files from emails or from the internet, or to move pictures around, since we can't move pictures or create new folders in the pictures app. (although it'd be nice if they added that functionality directly in the pictures app...)

Munkeyphyst says:

I can access the full resolution image files on my 1020 now

FFugue says:

OMg! I can't believe they did that, the French version is terrible! It says I have "800 Mo gratuit"! Which means 800 Mo free, but in the "no money" meaning of the word, not in the "available" meaning. That is such a basic mistake, I didn't expect that in an official app!!

BobPro2 says:

Is it capable of showing files on OneDrive so that docs, pics, videos etc can be copied back and forth in one place. If not, it should, like on the PC File Manager.

dby2011 says:

Doesn't see any of my music on my sdcard-I have all my music in a separate folder and the app doesn't even see the folder. It looks to me like the app will only show you default folders and any you create through the app. Between this and the awful implementation of the music app in 8.1 I am beginning to question sticking with WP.

sumton says:

Finally now the haters from other os's will shutup


Luis Ruiz2 says:

This still sucks we can't delete anything from the "Files" app specially those annoying factory app that don't want on our phone to save space. Is very limited to what we can do.

Munkeyphyst says:

What annoying factory app do you want to delete but can't

Luis Ruiz2 says:

For example FM radio and podacast I don't even use those apps they are just space consuming.

Munkeyphyst says:

I'd love to know how many kilobytes you free up by removing those

Luis Ruiz2 says:

I wish I would be to tell you but like I said we can't uninstall those apps. Probably chase they are factory apps and its stupid for those that don't use this apps and want them off.

absolutshame says:

Just shut up. Really.

Luis Ruiz2 says:

Yes I'm serious! Were you looking into deleting those apps as well.

RN50 says:

I don't get what the point is for this app on a phone without an sd card. I cant see my music on there and shouldn't there be some kind of password lock to hide Private things?

I'm hinging on agreement with respects to a file locker. Althogh doing so would open the floodgates for a belief in privacy (the UK way)...

DreadVenom says:

Sam, slightly off topic but I noticed you have "colour sheep". Do you recommend that game? I'm tempted, looks fun as hell and the concept seems fresh. I just got so many games.

tchaikie says:

Ok first I like the finishing. It's quite tidy.
Then I like the universal search ability.
However, I don't like the app tile, it's uninspiring.
Also, the memory of the action to move or copy should remain even while navigating around folders until I paste or cancel.

Super cool. Kudos to the developers who jumped in and released something before microsoft did. There is definitely room for more than one. I can see more folders with this app than with the other apps like Pocket explorer. Feels pretty stable and my camera roll pics load instantly, unlike the 3rd party apps already released.


That version number in the store though: 2014.523.1121.3909 xD

Jazmac says:

It looks great in the pictures. Don't know how much use it'll get but I'm glad to finally get an official app.

birgs says:

Please add swipe

herbertsnow says:

All my files are on onedrive. No point in this.

hugheshilton says:

Sounds like lots of you want this thing to have OneDrive integration so you can copy stuff to local storage from OneDrive, which is exactly what I want.  It can share files TO OneDrive, but it's not a share target so you can't copy stuff from OneDrive to your phone via this app.  To me, this seems like a primary use case and the app is more or less useless without this functionality.  Hence I have created a UserVoice request for this functionality so please vote for it here:

TJWINS says:

You can do this in Pocket File Manager.

birgs says:

Add swipe between images..

He1nr7 says:

Why do ppl olys compare WP o.s with Android o.s ....if u guys want exactly like android o.s den used Android o.s instead of complaing..

Luis Ruiz2 says:

You are so dam right my friend! I'm a big time MS fan and this app is little short to what MS can really do. Wouldn't you agree?I'm not comparing any OS with this comment.

absolutshame says:

Funny thing is android doesn't have an integrated file manager, just 3rd party apps.

sdreamer says:

The only reason I have this is for album management. FINALLY you can manage photos on your device without a computer.

birgs says:

Please add Slider control for video playback.

You win "comment of the day". I'm not even holding back on that one.

TJWINS says:

Pocket File Manager blows this official app out of the water. It imports PDF files from email and you can add cloud folders such as dropbox and OneDrive. This app doesn't compare.

birgs says:

I can manage my photos now thanks

birgs says:

More updates is coming so just wait.

tN0 says:

Would have liked to see it integrated into the OneDrive app. Similar as to how it works on Windows.

Awesome app but I it's not showing all of my files. Anyone else having this problem?

usman567 says:

Finally file manager is here. BBM was also coming soon.

Jack Neill says:

Can it give my 920 a SD card?

the-genius says:

This nice.its a system wide file manager and to help with all other mimicking third party apps. Now we need wide file support. Including a functional CHM file reader for my medical textbooks. And FLV and other files support. Long-lived windows phone, & WPC

Backfvis says:

nice,I hope it should  include onedrive app ,and used by maill app.

Rangan Das says:

Initial release and hence a few rough edges, but with some more'll be perfect!

Myster May says:

Praise the lord. A file manager

btgusto says:

LOVE the sort function. I wish OneDrive had this option

sd173 says:

This is awesome! I never saw the need for a file manager until the first time I used the horrible Windows 8 syncing app, then switched to using file explorer for moving files on my phone. This will be so much betterer than having to connect my phone to my Surface almost daily!

FILE mgr finally a version for windows phone. Nice one .. More power to Microsoft team.

raiinman says:

This is how it is done. Publish it and then keep adding features. Good job MS

It has a "Feedback" option :D

pluizebol says:

I like it !

But I would like to have OneDrive included as well.

For the time being I give it : 3 stars out of 5.

Keep up the good work.