The platform-ification of Windows continues. Microsoft released a Universal Windows App for OneDrive today, complete with a touch-friendly interface for browsing files.
OneDrive in Windows 8 featured a touch-friendly Windows Store app, included by default, but that disappeared with Windows 10. Microsoft’s renewed focus on the desktop meant OneDrive integrated there instead of inside the slightly separate Windows Store ecosystem. The new app, which you can download here, changes that, The Verge is reporting.
This app doesn’t sync files, instead giving users with limited hard drive capacity a way to browse files without taking up local storage space. Desktop users who want to keep their files in sync shouldn’t bother looking into this application, but some tablet users will be happy to have it.
Click and drag is supported, meaning users can quickly upload a file on their devices to their OneDrive account, and opening Office files works quickly with the mobile and desktop versions of Office.
Microsoft has tweaked OneDrive quite a bit in the past years, dramatically reducing the amount of free storage space offered in an attempt to convince more users to pay for the cloud service. Free users used to get 15GB of free storage, but now only get 5GB. This is in line with what Dropbox offers free users, but will be disappointing to users accustomed to 15GB.
Meanwhile, Microsoft has also been working hard placing first-party applications in its Windows Store. Versions of all sorts of standard Windows applications, from Wordpad to Paint, have started showing up there. OneDrive is, in this way, just the most recent example of Microsoft building out its tablet-friendly interfaces for first party applications.
The Paint version was particularly interesting because of its touch-friendly interface, the first major overhaul of that program in quite some time. Microsoft is building touch compatibility into Windows one step at a time, and it will be interesting to see how users embrace it.