iTunes File Sharing helps with some apps, but we wanted more control over the process, and the files. After checking around a half dozen apps, we settled on PadSync because it’s fast and easy to browse, sync, and manage files from Mac to iPad (or iPhone).
Simple Sync, Automatic, No Setup
The problem with syncing files between Mac and iOS device (PadSync works on iPad and iPhone) is the cumbersome method of file management in iTunes.
By using PadSync instead, you bypass the clumsy iTunes interface and synchronization takes place automatically when you connect the iPad to the Mac.
Documents are mirrored from one device to another. The PadSync interface is simple and straightforward and looks like a Mac app (it is) should look.
iOS device app icons are displayed in the left Sidebar. Click and you get a list of the app’s files in the right column. View documents and files as a list or as icons.
Adding files is easy, too. Just drag and drop to the appropriate app in PadSync and files are synced the next time you connect iPad or iPhone.
Likewise, you can drag files out, or drag files from one app to another (assumes the files are compatible, such as PDFs, text files, photos, etc.).
PadSync even lets you use Mac OS X’s Quick Look for previews. Simply press the spacebar and the document or file pops up for a closer view (click the photos above for a pop up, larger view).
Once you’ve used PadSync you’ll wonder why Apple didn’t include something like that as a Mac utility.
Change happens, of course, and there’s only one gotcha problem with PadSync.
iOS 5 now supports wireless sync between iPad or iPhone and your Mac, completely bypassing the need to plug your device into iTunes on the Mac (iTunes still needs to be running).
If you have plenty of files to share between your Mac and iOS iDevice, PadSync is a simple, elegant solution to manage files and get them synchronized with a minimum of fuss and bother.
If only it would sync wirelessly without using iTunes.