Sharing files between your friends and family should be simple. But sometimes it’s difficult. For example your first port of call may be to email the photos of your son or daughter to your grandmother but soon you encounter a hitch; attachment sizes.
You may then opt to upload the files to a file transfer service like Rapidshare or MegaUpload; but those sites aren’t the most non-tech friendly and could prove confusing for some. You’re running out of options now. Dropbox? Maybe.
But what about Receivd?
Received is a brand new real-time file sharing app that sits in the space between email and services like Dropbox and Cloud App. The app is currently in early beta and free for use.
Brendan Lim, Receivd’s co-founder along with Pradeep Elankumaran, told us that “Receivd is the simplest way to share files with friends and family. Our goal is to make sharing files as easy as possible so that you share more with the people you care about.” He continued to say that “Most non-technical people have issues sharing large files. E-mail doesn’t work for large files and Mom & Dad might not know how to use more complicated sharing solutions like Dropbox. Receivd also allows you to “passively” download files from connections that you trust.”
Personally, I find Dropbox a very intuitive and easy to use service but I understand where Lim is coming from. For non-techy people it may be confusing to simply drop a file into a box on their local harddrive and then have the contents of that folder sync with their online storage which is then shared with certain users. Normally if you want to share a file you go through a process whereby you upload or send a file.
Dropbox doesn’t do that, not in the visual sense anyway. Review is a more natural and intuitive way to share files.
In order for Receivd to be a viable alternative to a service like Dropbox, or a file sharing website, it needs to do a few things really well.
- The app needs to be simple to use
- Brilliantly designed
- Feature solid notifications
- Share files with ease between friends
- Remove as many ambiguities as possible
Receivd uses a drag and drop file sharing feature. Simply drag a file into the sharing area and your file is sent to your selected contact.
You will see a progress update notification just above the sharing area but this isn’t too obvious at first. I would prefer a more obvious notification feature or maybe even a sound effect to confirm the file transfer.
But what if your contact is not on Receivd? Invite them!
Go to connections and invite them by email. Once you invite your friend, their name appears in your list of connections. If you drag, drop, and share a file with your recently invited friend, they will receive the file once they have setup their Receivd account. Your file is queued until they setup their account and once they are all set they can receive your file.
And that’s exactly how it should work.
This allows you to setup your Receivd account, invite your contacts, share files them, once they sign-up, they receive the files.
You can also share a single file to a group of friends. Create a list and add the appropriate contacts, then share a file with the list. Again, this is very easy and very handy. Especially if you want to share files with fellow employees or within a specific team.
When you sign up to the service you can invite your Facebook & Twitter friends to join you on Received. At the moment this feature only finds your friends that have existing Receivd accounts and does not let you invite users to join the network.
It would be nice to also have an email invite feature since you probably have just as many email contacts that you would like to share files with than on social networks.
At the moment version 0.7.9 of Receivd is a Mac only app but we are told to expect an iPhone, iPad, and Android version in the near future and a fully featured web version is also on the horizon.
Want to get Receivd? Sign-up on their website for a beta invite and wait patiently for an email.
The verdict: I love Receivd. It hits home on simplicity, design, and functionality. There is of course a couple of things that I would like to see improved such as notifications and the ability to add contacts from email, Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin but I’m sure those features will be developed in upcoming releases.
Follow the guys on Twitter to keep up with developments.
- Simple to use
- Easily share files between friends and family
- No file restrictions (that I noticed)
- Super for an early release
- Notifications could be better
- Would like to add contacts from various networks