Apple has struggled to compete with its internet services, but the situation is getting better and iOS 9 now provides an iCloud app that you can use to access your files and folders. It is hidden, but you can unhide it.

The company has been left behind by Microsoft, Google and others when it comes to providing online storage and iCloud in the past was so locked down it was almost unusable, apart from the Apple apps and services that were hardwired to use it.

Apple opening up iCloud is a sign than things are changing and within iOS 9 is a hidden iCloud app that can be enabled and used to access your online storage. Everyone gets 5GB of free storage and more can be purchased, so why not make the most of it?

If you want to know how to enable this hidden extra on the iPhone or iPad, this guide is all you need to know.

1 Go to settings

Go to the home screen and press Settings. Swipe up the list of items until you come to iCloud and press it.

iCloud Drive

2 Go to iCloud Drive

Look down the list of settings and press iCloud Drive. It needs to be turned on, of course.

iCloud Drive on iPhone

3 Show the app

Make sure iCloud Drive is turned on and below is an option to show it on the home screen. Turn it on.

iCloud Drive on iPhone

4 Find the app

There will be a new iCloud Drive app on the home screen, but if the screen is full or nearly full it will be pushed onto the next screen. Find the app and press it.

iCloud Drive on iPhone

5 Explore iCloud Drive

A file manager appears and it shows the folders on iCloud Drive. Tap a folder to open it and tap a file to open it in the associated app, if there is one, or in a viewer if not. For example, you can tap a Pages file and view it on the screen even if you don’t have Pages on the iPhone or iPad.

iCloud Drive on iPhone


It is a small change, but it is also one that is useful and not only can you access the files on iCloud Drive, you can also see the free space available at the bottom too.