By now, if you have had an iOS device for a while and have struggled with backups and restores using iTunes, you are fully aware of it shortcomings and know that there are several alternatives in the app marketplace. One of those alternatives is AnyTrans by iMobie. It’s developers characterize it as more than an alternative – it’s a huge improvement over iTunes, offering a simpler, cleaner and faster way to manage files.
If you are like me, the first think you’ll notice is how sleek the app looks. The overall look and feel are simple and clean – almost Zenlike. You open the app and you get a sense of how easy it’s going to be to backup/restore and manage your apps.
At its very core, it works similarly to iTunes in that it syncs data between your computer and your iPhone, in both directions. Basic features include a robust app manager, a file manager, an iCloud data explorer and easy file transfers, moving files between two connected iOS devices. Connecting to other iOS devices is quick and easy, using the “radar” function in AnyTrans. It seeks out iOS devices within range and pulls them up as options to connect with.
File movement is easier because not only can you move all of the files that you had on your device, you can move a selective set of files, if you so choose, giving you more modular file management control. In iTunes, there was the concept of “libraries” which I never caught on to or like. AnyTrans still supports it, if you like it, but you don’t have to use it.
Another annoyance of iTunes that is eliminated in AnyTrans is duplication, which over time would end up taking over your memory. With AnyTrans, you don’t have to deal with that. The biggest differentiating feature in AnyTrans is its ability to transfer files between iOS devices, saving time and increasing convenience.
Using AnyTrans, you can also view what files have been backed up, which was something that was not supported in iTunes. This allows users see exactly what was backed up.
Convenience is further boosted by the built-in app manager. Open this up and you will see details on each app currently installed on your device. In addition to that, you will see all of the files associated with that app, making it easy to id and delete files you don’t need, keeping your device running smoothly.
One improvement that would be nice is the ability to define and target where files will be stored when backed up on a computer. Named folders make it easier to find your backup files and know that they are all there. Otherwise, you just have groups of random files that are not organized.
On the usability front, AnyTrans get high marks, and is a definite improvement over iTunes. It’s an app to consider if you are in the market for iOS file management and sharing. Click here to download AnyTrans for free.