After saying for the last 10 years that I would never own a cell phone (I had enough of that spending many years on call), I finally broke down and got one. It is a Figo (Speak Out) Android (Marshmallow) phone that allows me to buy a block of minutes without having to pay monthly fees. Basically I can use it as much or as little as I want and just pay for what I use.

My first complaint was the almost complete lack of documentation. It is a royal pain in the ass figuring out what every little (microscopic, actually) icon means.

My second complaint is how piss poor bluetooth seems to work. I don't know if it's a problem with Windows 10 or the phone but it seems that every attempt to transfer a file requires 20-20 minutes of fighting, removing, recreating bluetooth connections, and reconnecting again and again.

But a major complaint is for a problem that shouldn't be problem. I have been under the care of the good doctors for some years now for chronic cancer and I have decided that it would be a good idea to keep a medical history summary on my phone and carry it with me to all my appointments. Apparently the doctors here do not understand that that's what my medical file is for. In any case, after fighting with bluetooth (see above) Ii got the file "medical history.txt" transferred to my phone. Unfortunately, every attempt to access this file resulted in a nasty message informing me that google docs was unavailable because I was offline.

Now, I only go online when I am home near my router (I was at home but was offline at the time). So I have a problem. The file is (supposedly) on my cell phone but is (apparently) unavailable for me to view unless I am online.

So I can now finally get to my question. How can I transfer a text file to my Android phone so that I can view it without having to be online? I used to have an IPAQ (early PDA) which did this just fine. Surely modern tech should be able to accomplish this simple task.

In short, there is no manual and if there was this would be specific to your model and version OS. Since Android had no less than 10 versions and some hundred plus makers the only constant is there is no consistancy. At the office I work on our Android apps and we can not, can never tell our clients if our app works on a phone we haven't tested. We have to write "it should."

This can really upset folk that are used to fully documented systems. With Android, fragmentation and more means you have to either chuck it or dive in and figure it out. I can hear you screaming "how did this happen?"

How did it hppen that I can't look at a file on my phone unless I am online?

I wonder where that file is at. For example on Dropbox that file could be in their cloud but when I connect I can view it when offline.

You may wish to copy that file while online to some folder of your choice.

I connected the phone via USB then browsed to Internal Storage and created the folder Docs. I then copied medical history.txt to that folder. When I use the phone's file manager to open the file it says saving, then Upload/Conversion Error. An error has occurred while trying to upload and convert your document.

I tried File Manager -> Copy then Monospace -> Paste resulting in a Monospce document of length 0.

I tried File Manager -> Send to -> Monospace

I tried File manager -> Copy to clipboard then Monospace -> Paste

All result in a 0 length document.

Is this really the best modern tech can offer?

I have a medical situation also and keep an extensive amount of my own records on my phone.

For transferring data from my pc to my phone, Wi-Fi Droid works very well. It sets your phone as a server while activated and provides a URL in the app which you point your PC browser to. The web page it serves provides a comprehensive file manager utility for copying data back and forth. It doesn't use blue tooth. It uses your data plan or network connection, provided your network is under Wi-Fi, which it sounds like you have already done.

If you want to keep a comprehensive log of your phone calls, SMS Backup & Restore by Carbonite accesses the SMS or phone logs or both (your choice) and has features to upload the date to Google Docs or Dropbox. Third option would be access them from your phone using Wi-Fi Droid. The files are in XML and can be parsed by Excel into a human readable spreadsheet.

Hope this helps

Doesn't really help. Somehow a simple operation like

  1. Copy my file to my phone
  2. Look at it

has become a technical nightmare. In any case, using the complicated procedure, I still end up with a file on my phone that I can't look at offline. Am I the only one who sees the problem here?

At first it may be a technical quagmire as you figure out how to copy, where to place the file in the Android file system. The biggest hurdles appear to be getting used to the new way of things. It's like I droped you into a foreign land with no maps or even a compass. If you used your lessons and knowledge of WIMP (windows icon mouse point) you will be disoriented.

Hang in there. Eventually you find your way.

-> There's a reason why in a stock Android phone many of us install a file explorer like EFS File Explorer but that app has grown over time and isn't the simple thing it was long ago.

No. It's more like being dropped into a foreign land without a phrasebook and no way to speak the language. The biggest hurdle is not learning a new way to do things, it's trying to get the information on how to do things a new way. None of this shit appears to be written down anywhere.

OK. I have a workaround. If I

  1. Press menu
  2. swipe left
  3. press Settings
  4. Scroll down
  5. Press Storage & USB
  6. Scroll down
  7. Press Explore
  8. Select Docs
  9. Press medical history.txt
  10. Press Open with HTML Viewer

The file opens and displays properly. And now I can get the same option directly through File Explorer.

This is just fucking nuts.

That's something that I would call "Create a shortcut to a file or folder in Android" on google. Something like https://www.google.com/search?q=Create+a+folder+shortcut+android+file+explorer

And sure enough it has us install some file explorer to make it happen.

Android and iOS are not like Linux and Windows. The mobile OS concept has the user running an app not not dealing with files. It's folk that want to use it like our computers that want to see folders and files.

Figures. Android comes with a file explorer but I have to install another one. With all the crap that came bundled I am getting "low storage" notifications. I installed a 32 gig SD card but apparently I have only two options

  1. Install it as secondary storage
  2. Install and format as extended internal storage

Option 2 takes care of the low storage warnings but I lose access when I cable to my laptop USB. I'll leave it as secondary storage and just copy my docs to the SD card. Now that I can open them as html that is no longer a problem. I guess this thread is as solved as it's going to get. Thanks for the feedback.

Getting there.

Parting comment. On low memory Androids we trim the fat by going to Settings, Apps then find the apps we don't use and are careful not to do the following to system apps. Look at an app you never use then see if it has a DISABLE BUTTON. On current Android phones this will do two things. 1. Disable that app. 2. Uninstall updates to that app. I also tend to look to see if it has a CLEAR DATA button since that can free up more in some apps.

Again, we have to know what the app does since I did have some client go in and disable apps that were required for how they used their phone. "What do you mean I have to leave the messaging app enabled. Shouldn't messaging work without that?"

As a closing gripe, when I cable to the phone I can open Explorer to the SD card. Even though I have copied several files to the card and can open them on the phone, the Explorer window shows no files present.

I've seen that. Since the file system changes may not be seen by the file explorer I know to try closing the app and relauching or rebooting the phone. (Added with edit) To close the explorer app I tap the SQUARE icon at the screen bottom and swipe or use the X on the app(s) in question.

I also have seen phones that don't let the files be seen while you are using the USB connection to the PC. There's some limitations to how USB MSC works so this happens.

The problems just kept piling up. Calibre kept reporting a communication error and nothing was showing up in Explorer so I reset to factory and started from scratch. Everything is working as expected. Of course I now know how to open txt files as html.

Sigh.