Microsoft Details The New Improved SkyDrive Experience In Windows 8.1

SkyDrive Windows 8.1

SkyDrive is the consumer cloud storage solution from Microsoft that offers great ways to manage your files in the cloud. One of the best advantages of using SkyDrive is that it is deeply integrated into Windows. All your files are available to you on your phone, tablet, desktop PC, and via SkyDrive.com and opening and saving files to SkyDrive is now as easy as saving to your hard drive.

With all the existing features, Microsoft has further improved the SkyDrive experience in Windows 8.1. Today, they detailed some of them.

Place holder files and Smart Thumbnails:

Because people’s data storage needs will continue to grow faster than storage capacity on their mobile devices, we asked ourselves how we could provide you with access to all your SkyDrive files without actually downloading them, using precious local disk space and Internet bandwidth. Our answer is what we often refer to as “placeholder files.” Placeholder files look and feel like normal folders and files. You can tap or click a folder and see all the folders and files inside it. You can tap or click a file and it will open, you can edit it and close it. You can move, delete, copy, or rename placeholder files just like you would any folder or file. But we only download the full file when you access it.

For photos, flipping through lots of pictures in one go is a common scenario. We wanted to give you fast scrolling of photos without taking up a lot of local disk space. So we’re doing something even more special there. When you flip through photos, we download large thumbnail images instead of the actual files. And we pre-fetch thumbnails to enable fast scrolling. It’s only when you want to edit a photo that we download the full file to the local disk.

Combined, placeholder files and smart thumbnails allow you to see and interact with your entire SkyDrive without taking up much local disk space and only using your Internet connection when needed.

Offline access

One of the biggest investments we’ve made for Windows 8.1 is a seamless experience across connectivity states. So, if you’re on the go and want the documents you’re working on to be there when you lose Internet connectivity, and you want all your edits to make their way back up to SkyDrive when you get connected, we do just that without any need for manual configuration and setup.

With the SkyDrive app, you’ll be able to mark any folders or files you want for offline access. Edits on this device or another device will be synchronized so that you’re always working with the latest file. This is an explicit, easy-to-understand way to have guaranteed offline access to the files you most care about.

Opening, saving, and searching files

Any Windows Store app can use the Windows file picker to let you open, edit, and save any kind of file. In Windows 8.1, SkyDrive is built into the file picker – so every Windows Store app can save files directly to SkyDrive without any extra work. And the files will quietly get uploaded in the background so you don’t have to wait around. For example, if someone shares pictures with you in an email, you can save them to SkyDrive from the Mail app.

There are lots more! Read them in detail with screenshots in the link below. I think with all these features, SkyDrive is the best cloud storage solution for Windows users without any second thought.

via: Windows Team Blog

About the author  ⁄ pradeep

Pradeep, a Computer Science & Engineering graduate.

  • Otto Gunter

    Love the changes, having offline access to my files in RT is huge.

  • tomakali

    If Skydrive can explore/manage internal filesystem
    that will be too good.
    1 app to manage both local and cloud files and folders

  • Yuan Taizong

    I can see Microsoft SkyDrive’s integration with 3rd party apps become a killer feature of Windows, Android has always lacked full integration with Google’s services, and iCloud is pretty much useless unless you’re 100% in the Apple ecosystem, the only real competition Microsoft has is Dropbox, here, but Dropbox can’t integrate with 3rd party services as well (¿or is it 4th party?), so Microsoft SkyDrive has an easy long-term advantage on Windows, I can’t wait to use it as my file explorer on Windows 8.1 (Blue) and to use it as a full device back-up.

  • TryllZ

    MS needs Skydrive like file explorer in Windows phone too, at least for file management….in phones, currently there is none…