There are a lot of apps available that turn your iPhone into a thumb drive, an FTP server, or a document viewer. Most do not leverage the iPhone’s capabilities as well and efficiently as GoodReader can.
Much like every other thumb drive app available, GoodReader allows you to mount your iPhone as a network drive as long as you’re on the same WiFi network. The process is simple and quick. If you’re not familiar with how to accomplish this, the app has a very detailed how-to guide and FAQ built in. The usual file types like .doc, .xls, .pdf, are handled effortlessly. It will also handle audio and hi res images just as easily.
Where the app really excels, is its ability to connect to other sources such as email accounts, webDAV servers, and download from the web. This was something that stuck out in my eyes when browsing the apps features. These add-ons are available as an in-app purchase, which I was not a fan of. Especially since it really makes the app much more functional. I would rather pay a higher price and just get all the functionality up front. Games are a different story.
Now with some extra work (since I didn’t want to pay for email connectivity), I was able to test out one of the most troubling elements of my job. By the way, I work in IT and if you use Symantec Endpoint Protection for your security needs, then you will completely see the value in what I am about to say. I saved an alert that was sent to my corporate email to my desktop, the sent the file to my mounted iPhone. The alerts from Symantec are in .mht format, a proprietary archive format that houses text and images in a single file. This format is not viewable on a Blackberry, and I was not able to find any third party apps that can view this file type. You can’t rename it and try to view it some other way on the device. Why am I going on and on about this? This is a serious flaw in Symantec’s thought process. Think about it, 98% of all corporations use what type of cellular email device? A Blackberry. Why they chose this file output format is beyond me.
Back to my point, GoodReader completely fixes this. If you setup your email account with the in-app purchase add-on, then when you get an alert about an Outbreak infection, you can simply open GoodReader, download the file, and immediately get to work on isolating the threat. That is HUGE, especially in a world where corporations are hesitant to adopt the iPhone. This will give you some leverage if you want to sway them!
Another standout feature is the ability to dynamically wrap text when scaling the view of a PDF file. This makes reading much more convenient since you will not need to scroll left and right to read a line of text. This increase productivity in my eyes, which gives this app extra value in my everyday operations.
GoodReader sports a super clean interface with full Landscape support. This really comes in hand when referring to a document while using a third party stand, such as the one that came with my Incase shield. When viewing a document, you can dismiss and recall the function buttons by tapping the center of the screen much like when viewing your camera roll.
At its initial price, GoodReader is pretty good. The add-on features, if built-in with a higher price tag, would really push this app over the threshold. It can stand its ground against the competition easily as is, and the extra functionality is there if you need it.