Find files in Drive on your iPhone and iPad

This article describes the latest version of the Drive app for iOS. To get the latest version, download an update from the App Store.

Drive views

The Drive app gives you a few different ways to view what’s on your Drive.

  • My Drive: Everything in your Google Drive that you’ve created, synced and uploaded. Folders will be shown first, followed by files and Google Docs in alphabetical order. You can automatically sync My Drive to the Google Drive folder on your computer.
  • Shared with me: All of the files, folders and Google Docs that have been shared with you. To sync files in this view, move them to My Drive on your computer. The Shared with me filter doesn't include files shared to a mailing list or files set to 'Anyone with the link' or 'Public' (unless the file has been shared directly to your email address).
  • Starred: Items that you’ve marked with a star. If you star something in the Google Drive app, it’ll be starred in Google Drive on the web.
  • Recent: All the private and shared files that you've opened, in reverse chronological order.
  • Offline: Shows items you’ve made available to view offline on your iPhone or iPad. Read more about pinning items offline in the Drive app for iOS.
  • Uploads: Shows the most recent files you uploaded to your Drive app. This section will also show files from other apps that you’ve opened in Drive.

Within each of the views, you can touch the list or grid icon at the top of the screen to toggle how the items are displayed. The list icon displays your files and folders as a list of items while the grid icon displays these items as a grid of images complete with thumbnail previews of the files.

If you tap on a photo in your Drive, you'll see a large preview of that photo. If you then swipe to the left or right, you'll see a large preview of other files.
Star any Drive files that you’ll need to return to in the near future. Then access them right from the Starred view.

Sort files

You can sort your files in the Drive app to make it easier to find specific files. For example, you can sort files by “Last edited by me” or “Last opened by me” and you’ll see the most recent file you touched at the top of the list.

  1. Touch Sort next to the search box in your list of files.
  2. From the sorting list, touch the option you want to use.
  3. The files will be sorted. Repeat the process to sort the views differently.

Sorting can be applied to search results, as well as to each of the views within the app. For example, if you touch Sort within the "Starred" section, you will sort only your starred files. You can also sort files within a specific folder in your Drive.

Files sorted in the "Recent" section of the Drive app may not include files you have just added to Drive unless they have already been opened.

Search for files

The Search box is located at the top of your screen.

  • The Drive app will match your search terms to both the names of your files and their contents. Search for text within a file, or search for the names of things featured in pictures on your Drive, like “Eiffel Tower.”
  • Drive uses OCR technology to search the content of non-Google Docs files.
  • As you type search terms into the Search box, the app will show a running list of suggested results. To get the full list of results, finish typing and tap Search on your device’s keyboard.