DropDAV Makes iWork on iPad Sync with Dropbox

Dave Courbanou

April 15, 2011

2 Min Read
DropDAV Makes iWork on iPad Sync with Dropbox

I’m sure there are a few of you trying to justify buying an iPad for work. Luckily, there are plenty of business apps available that make the iPad downright useful in the corporate setting. DropDAV is one of those tools that make my iPad more work-friendly, and it links with Dropbox. If you’re a busy VAR or MSP looking for an easy way to get those Pages, Keynote or Numbers files onto your computer without having to use iTunes, read on.

In the past, I’ve sung the praises of apps such as Plaintext, which provided text editing in its most simplest form combined with instant Dropbox syncing. But the first purchase I made on my iPad was Apple Pages, and I began to feel as though I was underutilizing it, mainly because it was a pain to transfer the files off the iPad. Syncing to iTunes can be annoying and time-consuming, and — dare I say it — iTunes is also woefully disorganized.

Apple Pages doesn’t support Dropbox, and neither do Keynote and Numbers. And I’m not surprised, since Apple would like to push its own syncing solutions, be it iWork.com or MobileMe. But the iWork suite on the iPad does support WebDAV (Web-based Distributed Authoring and Versioning), a protocol allows for HTTPS connections between web servers for editing and storing documents on servers.

Dropbox doesn’t support WebDAV, but DropDAV does. DropDAV is very simple: Essentially, DropDAV exists as a WebDAV conduit between Dropbox and a WebDAV front-end client such as the iWork suite. Punch in your Dropbox credentials after verifying them on the DropDAV site, and then simply point the WebDAV client to https://dav.dropdav.com. Done.

So now, I can blog in Pages, save up to the cloud, come home to my Mac, open my Dropbox folder, and copy-paste to WordPress.

If you have a free Dropbox account, it’s free. If you pay for a Dropbox account, DropDAV has a pricing scale based on your paid storage plan. Anyone using Dropbox as part of their daily workflow, especially in conjunction with iWork (or any other iPad app that uses WebDAV), should consider DropDAV. However, for those with incredibly high security concerns, there is a caveat: DropDAV temporarily stores your file on their server to necessitate the transfer to Dropbox. After the transfer is complete, the file is eliminated. While most people may not find this an issue, DropDAV may not be ideal for those who have to deal with a paranoid-level of privacy.

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