Share files between PC and iPhone over your network

It is common to copy files around our mobile phones and computers. For example, you may record a video on the phone, then send it to your computer and finish the video footage with a professional video editor, such as Adobe Premiere. Transferring files between iOS device and Mac is a simple process since Apple has the AirDrop feature built in all Apple devices. Not everyone knows how to share files between a Windows PC and iOS device though. In this guide, we will show you how to quickly transfer files from a Windows 10 PC to iPhone, iPad or the other way around.

Step 1. Turn on Network Discovery & File Sharing on PC

Open the File Explorer on your Windows PC, you will see the navigation panel on the left hand side. Scroll down to the bottom to find Network. If network discovery is currently disabled, you will get the error message saying network discovery is turned off.

turn on network discovery file sharing file explorer windows pc

Click Turn on network discovery and file sharing, then choose a network profile if you are prompted to do so. Usually you should choose No, make the network that I am connected to a private network.

turn on network discovery file sharing private public networks file explorer windows

Step 2. Share files and folders on Windows computer

It is very simple to share files and folders in Windows. Just open the File Explorer on your PC, locate the folder you wish to share across the network. Right click on it, choose Properties. Switch to the Sharing tab in the Properties window opens. Click Share button to share a folder and configure its permissions. Add the Everyone user/group and grant it the Read/Write permission so you can view, open, modify, and delete the content on the folder you are sharing from iPhone or other network devices. Windows will take a moment to set up your new shared folder and it’ll be accessible from other devices on the same local network. 

share files, folders over network from file explorer on windows computer

Step 3. Connect iPhone to Windows file sharing server

Once the files and folders have been shared on your Windows PC, you can access them from iPhone using a SMB client. Fortunately the built-in Files app on iPhone can be used as a SMB client to access Windows shared files and folders. It is the default file explorer or manager for iOS. You don’t need to download extra file manager or app.

Launch the Files app on iPhone. Tap the menu (three dots in a circle icon) from the top right corner, select Connect to Server from the drop-down menu. See below screenshot.

iphone files app - connect to server

The Connect to Server screen opens, type in your PC IP address or PC name in the Server field. Don’t know your local computer IP? There are various ways to find your local IP address in Windows computer.

  1. Press the Windows key + R on your keyboard to open the Run dialog box.
  2. Type “cmd” and press Enter to open the Command Prompt.
  3. In the Command Prompt, type “ipconfig” and press Enter.
  4. Scroll down to the section labeled “Ethernet adapter” or “Wi-Fi” (depending on how you are connected to the network).
  5. Look for the “IPv4 Address” entry under the appropriate adapter. This is your local IP address.

Alternatively, you can also use the Windows Settings app to find your local IP address:

  1. Open the Windows Settings app.
  2. Click on “Network & internet”.
  3. Click on “Ethernet” or “Wi-Fi” (depending on how you are connected to the network).
  4. Scroll down to the “Properties” section and look for the “IPv4 address” entry. This is your local IP address.

Once you entered the computer IP address on iPhone, tap on Connect button at the top right corner. See below screenshot.

iphone files app - connect to server - type in server IP

Choose Registered User, then input your PC login user and password on iPhone, tap on Next. You can then access shared files and folder on PC from iPhone using the stock Files app.

iphone files app - connect to server - input username and password

You can list, open, video or play files saved on your PC right from your iPhone using the Files app. You can play the music and movies shared from your PC without the need to copying them over to your iPhone first.

You can copy files from Windows to iPhone or from iPhone to PC over Wi-Fi. It is extremely fast. For example, to download those photos, videos captured using the camera on your iPhone, open the Photos app on iPhone, find and select the media files, choose Share > Save to Files, then choose the Windows shared folders, finally tap on the Save button on the top right corner to send a copy of the selected videos or photos from iPhone to your PC.

transfer files, photos, videos, documents from iphone to windows 11 computer wirelessly using Files app

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