It goes without saying that Google’s Android mobile phone platform is incredibly powerful and offers bags of potential for those of us that like customising our handsets, but the lack of a dedicated file manager has been a thorny issue for users.
Even the most basic Sony Ericsson or Nokia phone allows you to find your way around the phone’s internal memory, but sadly the Android platform doesn’t currently permit the same level of navigation – a truly bizarre oversight.
That’s where OI File Manager comes in; once installed this application presents your handset’s internal memory as folders and files – just as it appears whenever you hook up the phone to a PC via USB and ‘mount’ the phone for mass storage.
The one huge bonus of this approach is that you can quickly and easily manage your memory without having to laboriously traipse through all of the individual portions of the Android operating system. With the standard OS, you would have to enter the Music application to delete MP3 files or fire up the Photo viewing app to remove images you no longer wanted.
With OI File Manager you can do all this from one single application; it’s also possible to create new folders, rearrange existing files, send items via MMS or email and even rename documents.
What’s more, the application seamlessly integrates with existing programs already on the phone; tapping an MP3 will effortlessly launch the Android music player, for example.
After a few minutes of experimentation you’ll legitimately wonder how you ever lived without this application; however, after a few moments longer you’ll begin to notice nigglesome shortcomings that take a little bit of the shine off the entire experience.
For example, you can’t delete folders that contain files. Instead, you must painstakingly delete each individual file, which is both time-consuming and irksome.
Also, not all file associations seem to be recognised. For instance, we noticed that some of the JPG images we had on our SD card gave ‘Application Not Available’ errors. What’s puzzling is that other images with the same extension opened without any problems.
As is the case with all of the applications currently offered on the Android Marketplace, it’s a given that OI File Manager will improve with time; the developers have created an excellent starting point from which to build on and if they can rectify some of the relatively minor problems then they’ll have answered the prayers of many Android users that still remain perplexed as to why their phones didn’t possess a basic file manager in the first place.
OI File Manager info
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Website/Demo: OpenIntents website