How to Find Downloads on iPhone and Where Are Downloads

Is there a downloads folder on iPhone, just like that on a Mac or Windows computer? And how to find what you’ve downloaded on your iPhone 7, iPhone 6, or iPad, iPod touch?

On a Windows or Mac computer, there is a Downloads Folder where you can store all files that you’ve downloaded from Internet or Email. But things are different in iOS, you can’t find similar “downloaded folder” on your iPhone or iPad.

Where are downloads on iPhone and iPad?

Different from Windows, Mac and Android, Apple mobile operating system manages files in a different way. On your iPhone iPad and iPod touch, iOS will put your downloaded file to related apps based on its format.

For example, if you go through a PDF file via Safari on your iPhone 7 , you can view the PDF using Safari. Or you can download it to “iBooks” or iCloud Drive. 

How to Download PDF in iOS 10 iPhone 7
How to Download PDF in iOS 10 iPhone 7

If you hold on a picture in Safari, it will show you an option “Save Image” to save the picture. After tapping “Save Image”, your iPhone won’t tell you where the image will go. But actually the picture will be automatically downloaded to Photos app on your iPhone.

Download image to iPhone Photos app
Download image to iPhone Photos app in iOS 10.3

How to find downloads on iPhone and iPad [5 Tips]

Just like we’ve showed in the first part, sometimes your iPhone won’t tell you where your downloads saved. For old iOS users, it’s easy to find the downloads. But if you are new, you should know some basic knowledge on how iOS save downloaded files.

1. Check Apple built-in apps and cloud service like iCloud Drive

Usally, Photos app stores pictures, Music app stores purchased songs and iBook app stores PDF. iPhone allows you to store files to iCloud drive or other cloud server like Dropbox, so you can check whether you’v saved them there.

2. Check the app download history to find your saved files

Some apps will record your download history, and offer you the list to view all your downloads in the app. In this way, you can get your download. However, most of apps don’t have download list feature.

3. You can use files apps to manager downloads on iPhone

Although there is no “downloads folder” on iPhone, some files managers for iOS enables you to manager and preview downloaded files, such as File Manager & Web Browser. Notice that most of these apps are not free.

Downloads Manager for iPhone iPad
Downloads Manager for iPhone iPad

4. Use files browsing software.

Some desktop-based  iOS managing software enables you to access iOS files system as folders. Better than iTunes, the iOS managers can access not only media files but also pictures, PDFs and even app data on your device. In this way you can view and search your saved files on your iOS device.

Related Reading: Best iTunes Alternative for iPhone Data Transfer

5. iOS 11 brings “Files App for iOS” to manage files on iPhone iPad

iOS 11 beta brings one new app – “Files App for iOS“, to manager files on iPhone and iPad. And it may helps you to preview files, edit documents and manage downloads for free in the future. And we’ve installed iOS 11 on our device, and now we don’t find the Downloads feature, but we can save PDF and images to Files app in iOS 11.

iOS 11 Files App
iOS 11 Files App

Related Reading: The full list of iOS 11 features

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