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How to Transfer Files from PC to iPad Using USB Cable (Effective)

"I'm looking for options to copy files from a Windows 7 PC to iPhone 7, hopefully directly. There's no Internet connection and no WiFi and I'd like to avoid installing iTunes (would it even work without Internet?). Suggestions?"

If you run into similar problems, this step-by-step tutorial will help. Though iPad and Windows PC have different operating systems, it doesn't mean it is impossible to move files between them. Here, we will show you how to transfer files from PC to iPad using USB cable with or without iTunes.

how to transfer files from pc to ipad using usb

Part 1: How to Transfer Files from PC to iPad Using USB Cable without iTunes
Part 2: How to Transfer Files from PC to iPad Using USB Using iTunes
Bonus: How to Transfer Files from USB to iPad

Part 1: How to Transfer Files from PC to iPad Using USB Cable without iTunes

Coolmuster iOS Assistant is your ideal iTunes alternative that comes with comprehensive features for transferring and managing iOS data. With this useful tool, you can transfer contacts, calendars, bookmarks, books, and even iTunes backup files from computer to your iPhone/iPad/iPod. The transfer process is simple and safe, without overwriting the existing data on your iPhone.

Coolmuster iOS Assistant - An All-in-one manager for iOS Device

  • Fast & stable transition. Connecting with a USB, you can move files from PC to iPad quickly without data loss.
  • Two-way transfer. Apart from PC to iPad transfer, you can also transfer from iPad to computer, files including contacts, SMS, photos, music, videos, notes, books.
  • Quick & flexible backup. 1-click to back up multiple file types from iOS device to any location on computer or iTunes backup location.
  • No tech knowledge required. With a clear and intuitive interface, everyone can handle the data transfer without trouble.
  • Wide compatibility. It works well with all iOS devices with iOS 5 and up, including iOS 14.

ipad file transfer windows versionipad file transfer mac version

Note: With Coolmuster iOS Assistant, you can transfer files including contacts, calendars, books, and bookmarks from computer to iPad. If you want to move media files like photos or videos to iPad, please refer to this guide: How to transfer video from PC to iPad without iTunes.

Guide: How to transfer files from PC to iPad using USB via iOS Assistant

Step 1: Download and launch Coolmuster iOS Assistant on your PC.

run coolmuster ios assistant on pc to transfer files from pc to ipad

Step 2: Connect your iPad to the computer using a USB cord and tap "Trust" on your iPad if required. The software will quickly detect your iPad.

connect ipad to pc to transfer files from pc to ipad using usb

Step 3: Navigate to the desired file types and tap the Import button from the top. A Windows File Explorer will open, you can select the files you want and click Open to transfer to iPad.

how to transfer files from pc to ipad using usb via coolmuster ios assistant

Coolmuster iOS Assistant also can help you transfer files from USB to iPad. Here's what to do: Connect both your USB drive and iPad to PC. After the software detects your iPad, go to the desired file type > click Import > navigate to the USB drive and select the files you want to transfer > click Open to move files from USB to iPad.

Also read: How to Transfer Files from PC to iPad without iTunes

Can you transfer files from PC to iPad using USB via File Explorer?

Sadly, you cannot transfer files from PC to iPad using USB directly through the File Explorer, not even the photos or videos. By connecting your iPad to computer with a USB, you can access the "100APPLE" folder, which stores the photos and videos. When trying to drag a photo to it, you will see a forbidden icon under the photo, meaning that you are not allowed to finish this task. However, you can transfer photos from iPad to PC directly using this way.

Part 2: How to Transfer Files from PC to iPad Using USB with iTunes

iTunes is the official method to transfer files from PC to iPad using USB cable. It supports multiple files, including photos, videos, music, audiobooks, podcasts, etc. There are two options for you when it comes to using iTunes: Syncing or the File Sharing feature.

If you don't want to lose any current data on your iPad, you can try the indirect File Sharing feature. If you iPad is new or you don't mind overwriting the existing files, you can opt for iTunes syncing.

No matter which way you choose, it is suggested you should install the latest version of iTunes to complete the transfer.

Transfer files from PC to iPad using USB via iTunes File Sharing:

Step 1: Connect iPad to PC with a USB cable.

Step 2: Open iTunes on your computer and click the device icon from the the top of the window.

Step 3: Click File Sharing under Settings. You will then see a list of apps under the Apps section, select the suitable app to transfer files.

Step 4: Click the Add button on the right column and select the files to transfer from PC to your iPad.

Step 5: After transferring, you can open the app on your iPad and check the files.

how to transfer files from pc to ipad using usb via itunes file sharing

Transfer files from PC to iPad using USB via iTunes syncing:

Step 1: Connect iPhone to computer using a USB cable, unlock your iPad and tap Trust if prompted.

Step 2: Run iTunes on PC and click the device icon.

Step 3: Go to the file type you want to sync, and check the box next to Sync, you can then select the items you like to transfer. After selection, click Apply to sync files from computer to iPad.

how to transfer files from pc to ipad using usb via itunes syncing

Bonus: How to Transfer Files from USB to iPad

You can move files from the USB flash drive to your iPad using the Files app on your iPad. But note that if your USB isn't a Type-C flash drive, you will need a lightning to USB adapter to connect the USB drive to your iPad.

How to transfer files from USB to iPad:

Step 1: Connect the USB external hard drive to your iPad with the USB adapter.

Step 2: Open the Files app on your iPad and then tap Browse on the lower right corner.

Step 3: Create a new folder on your iPad to store the files.

Step 4: You can see the connected hard drive in the Locations section, tap it to see all the files and folders on the drive.

Step 5: Hold and select the files you want to transfer, tap Move at the bottom.

Step 6: Find the new folder you just created and tap Copy. Then the files from the USB drive are moved to your iPad.

transfer files from usb to ipad

Final Words

This article tells you how to transfer files from PC to iPad using USB with or without iTunes. Though iTunes is an official way to move files between iPad and computer, many people find it a bit troublesome to operate with its outdated interface. If you are also not a fan of iTunes, you can use Coolmuster iOS Assistant, which helps you take care of the data transferring and managing without iTunes. With it, you can get your files from PC to iPad with minimal effort. Take a tour with Coolmuster iOS Assistant now >>

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How to Transfer Photos from Android to iPad in 4 Simple Ways? (Updated)

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