OneDrive Android App Goes Business Casual

Users of Microsoft's OneDrive app for Android can now access both their work and personal files on the same app.

cloud storage

Microsoft's OneDrive cloud storage app for Android now makes it easier for users to access both their work and personal files.

"Today we are excited to announce the first OneDrive for Business native experience on Android, part of a significant update to the existing personal OneDrive app," announced Reuben Krippner, director of product management for Office 365, in an Aug. 28 statement. "It's our first app that brings together OneDrive and OneDrive for Business in a single experience."

The new unified experience is a nod to mobile workers' personal lives bleeding into professional settings, and vice versa. It is the first of more updates, hinted OneDrive Group Program Manager Jason Moore, "that holistically addresses what people, businesses, and IT managers need."

While smartphones and tablets may have blurred the lines between life at home and at the office, the need to keep them separate still exists.

"Users can now get to their personal or work files, easily share with family or coworkers, and ensure that they're never without the files that matter to them—all from a single app," stated Moore in a OneDrive Blog post. "Your personal and work accounts are kept separate, and OneDrive makes it clear when you're accessing your work or personal files."

And users will have access to a growing amount of cloud storage.

The cloud storage wars have been a boon for business users and consumers. After delivering a massive OneDrive for Business storage upgrade in May—from 25GB to 1TB per user—Microsoft turned its attention to the service's consumer-grade counterpart.

In June, the company announced that OneDrive users can now grab 15GB of free cloud storage, compared with the previous limit of 7GB. Additionally, the company cut the price of its paid plans by 70 percent.

Expanded storage options aside, the new OneDrive app for Android also features a new security-enhancing option.

"To make your OneDrive even more secure on your phone, our Android app also now supports setting up a PIN," said Moore. "Simply create a 4 digit code, and you can limit access to the app and your files." Rounding out the updates is the ability to open files directly from OneDrive with external apps and speedier photo backups.

Microsoft isn't neglecting iPhone, iPad and Windows Phone users, however.

"We've added a new, native search experience on iPhone and iPad," revealed Moore. "Users can now swipe down in the app to reveal a search box." The company also implemented the OneDrive Web app's All Photos view, he added, along with a new camera backup status indicator.

Finally, Windows Phone users can now pluck mistakenly deleted items from their OneDrive recycle bin. "This update started rolling out last week, and it makes it easy to restore accidently deleted files and folders while you're on the go," said Moore.

Pedro Hernandez

Pedro Hernandez

Pedro Hernandez is a contributor to eWEEK and the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals. Previously, he served as a managing editor for the network of...