SugarSync Wins the Race for iPad Document Syncing

One of the biggest complaints about the iPad is a workable file system or any way to sync and work with documents back and forth between an iPad and another computer. Solutions have been promised and I’m sure are being worked on feverishly.

It looks like SugarSync may have won the race to be the first app to provide syncing and editing of docs back and forth according to an announcement today. Although keep in mind this still isn’t as easy as it should be. If you’re editing or creating a document in the iPad iWorks suite you still have to email it back to your SugarSync account to get it to sync up. The full press release follows at the end of this post but here’s an excerpt on how it works”

How it works:

  1. Via the SugarSync for iPad app, browse and view files from all computers already synced to the SugarSync cloud.
  2. To edit a document (for example), click “Open in Pages” at the top of the screen (an appropriate document editor, e.g., Pages, Numbers or Keynote, must be installed).
  3. In Pages (or other document editor), edit as desired and save the file to the iPad’s local storage.
  4. Sync the file directly back to a SugarSync cloud account and remote computers via SugarSync’s Upload by Email. (Updated files are found in a dedicated SugarSync folder).

We’ll see how quickly the other competitors move in this space. In fact, I’m surprised that we haven’t seen more sooner.

Press release follows:

SugarSync Inc., makers of the award-winning SugarSync file sync, backup and file sharing service, today announced that Apple has approved the second version of SugarSync for iPad, with significant new capabilities empowering iPad users to access files from remote computers via the cloud, edit them on the iPad, save them locally, and re-sync files back to SugarSync.

The new version is available immediately in the iPad app store, and remains free.

“Out of the box, the iPad is ideal for entertainment, gaming and Internet browsing. Now, with SugarSync, the iPad is a truly productive mobile computer – complementary to your laptop, desktop and/or smartphone,” said Laura Yecies, CEO of SugarSync. “Full two-way access to, and editing of, all your cloud-synced files via the Internet is a major development. We’re very excited to deliver it.”

The original SugarSync for iPad app, which made its debut in the App Store on the first day of iPad sales two weeks ago, allowed users to view files and photos from remote computers, share files and folders, and stream music over the Internet. However, users couldn’t directly open files to edit or save them locally – limiting the ability to easily work on the iPad.

The new functionality is possible as a result of two main features: the new Document Support feature in Apple’s iPhone SDK 3.2, and SugarSync’s Upload by Email feature, launched in January. Combined, these two features bridge SugarSync’s cloud storage and file sharing system with the iPad’s local document creation and editing features.

How it works:

  1. Via the SugarSync for iPad app, browse and view files from all computers already synced to the SugarSync cloud.
  2. To edit a document (for example), click “Open in Pages” at the top of the screen (an appropriate document editor, e.g., Pages, Numbers or Keynote, must be installed).
  3. In Pages (or other document editor), edit as desired and save the file to the iPad’s local storage.
  4. Sync the file directly back to a SugarSync cloud account and remote computers via SugarSync’s Upload by Email. (Updated files are found in a dedicated SugarSync folder).

“This is only our first step in our efforts to make your experience entirely seamless, for all of your files to effortlessly sync in the background as you work, no matter what device you’re using,” continued Yecies. “We’ll continue to work with Apple to make this vision a reality.”

SugarSync’s iPad app is a single application optimized for the iPad, Apple iPhone and iPod Touch, enables instant remote access to all of a user’s data – making it extremely easy and convenient to view and edit files and photos, stream an entire library of music, and share files – or even entire folders – with colleagues and friends over the Internet.

The complete SugarSync service syncs files and folders between any combination of Macs and Windows PCs and popular smartphones, with all files backed up to the SugarSync cloud. All data is then instantly available in the iPad — no tethering or cables required. Mobile applications include iPad/iPhone, Android, BlackBerry and Windows Mobile.


3 Comments

  1. Gary

    04/19/2010 at 6:33 pm

    Isnt this identical to Dropbox? I know Dropbox doesnt have an iPad app yet though…?

    Reply

    • Warner Crocker

      04/19/2010 at 7:22 pm

      Very similar indeed. But as you say Dropbox hasn’t come up with an iPad app yet. In fact, on my iPad, using the iPhone version of Dropbox yields much less than satisfactory results.

      Beyond that, Dropbox’s iPhone app doesn’t take advantage of the file sharing.

      Reply

  2. mrpacs

    04/20/2010 at 9:30 pm

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