iOS 10: The iCloud app extension is totally broken, we need Apple’s help

In ios 10, Apple changed its iCloud Drive app extension from an icon view (below) to a list view (featured image, above) with all folders and sub-folders hardwired to be open.

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iCloud Drive’s good ol’ days

This creates a significant usability problem for anyone with even a modest collection of folders and projects. But for those of us who are putting more and more in iCloud, or switching to it completely, this makes the service downright unusable.

Any time I try to save anything to iCloud Drive on iPad or iPhone—a photo, a PDF from Mail, a file exported from any app—attempting to navigate this list to find the actual folder I need is impossible. This isn’t hyperbole, it’s simply impossible. There are far, far too many folders to scroll through in any amount of time one could deem reasonable.

I need your help with asking Apple to fix this, as I’ve been reporting it since the very first iOS 10 beta last summer. I think one of these three solutions should do the trick, though I’m open to other ideas. Anything but what we have now:

  1. Revert to iOS 9’s icon view – Not a perfect solution, but certainly useful in a number of cases and possibly preferred by those with more modest folder collections. This is also now the default view the first view the first time a user runs the iCloud Drive app in iOS.
  2. Switch this new list view to a column view – This is actually an option in the iCloud Drive app itself, which makes this all the more frustrating; simply pull down while in any folder and you’ll see the toggle icon in the upper right. Like macOS’s Finder, a column view would be a pretty big improvement to overall usability, and it would do wonders for simplifying and quickening our typical file saving, retrieving, and moving workflows. If we had to choose between 1 and 2, I’d pick 2.
  3. Let us pick between 1 and 2 on the fly, like in the app – My preferred solution, as both views are useful enough in their own right. I wager adding the toggle button to the app extension sheet, similar to the iCloud Drive app itself, should do the trick.

Please dupe my bug report, it’s 28637600 (I think?). Please submit your own feedback and bug reports. Or pass my post along to your friend on or near the iCloud team. Please tweet it or email it to Tim Cook, for all the good that might do. But as of now, iCloud Drive is utterly broken and unusable on iOS 10, which is just baffling.