Free File and Network Browser for Android:
I was searching for a Network Browser initially so that I could browse my computer hard drive from my Samsung Galaxy Note 3 via WiFi . The initial idea was to access some pictures which were in “My Pictures” on my computer. Now I use computer upstairs and my living room is downstairs and I would need access to my computer files almost all the time specially the images and pictures. I have a business that relies a lot on those pictures. In the beginning I would keep all the files on my laptop as well so that whenever I need the files and I am not on my main computer, I would just use the laptop. Soon it started becoming a painful process. The reason was that I would forget to update the files on the laptop and then when I would need them I would remember that laptop is not up to date.
The Journey of finding the best Network Browser on Android:
I started using Team Viewer on my laptop. It was slow but kind of okay for the pictures but it was in no way useable for videos. The videos were basically wedding set decorations and I had to see and show them to my clients like all the time. So I thought that how can I stream videos from my computer on my Samsung Note 3 which uses Android via WiFi. So I started looking for “Network Browser” on Google Play. There were way too many available and almost all of them for free. So my journey started by trying those network browser apps one by one. It was a boring and time consuming process. I would install an App, try somethings and when it would fail on any step, I would uninstall it from the applications manager and then install the next Network Browser App from Google Play.
ES File Explorer:
I finally found ES File Explorer. First of all it was free (and it still is). Then it was able to browse local phone memory, SD card memory and local area network as well. I was able to search the local area network while I was connected to WiFi and the computer was connected via Ethernet to local area running Windows Operating System. I was able to browse all the shared folders and directories on my computer via my Android mobile phone. The access was quick and I was even able to stream videos stored on my computer.
How to Access Local Area Network Shared Files on Android Mobile or Tablet:
1) Download ES File Explorer. Go to Google Play Store and search for ES File Explorer. Download and install the app.
2) Open the app. It will show you your files on the phone.
3) Swipe right to left to go from “Local” to “LAN” tab.
4) Click on “Add” and Scan for servers.
5). ES File explorer will show you available computers and devices on that network (for example network NAS hard drives etc). Click on the computer you want to access.
6) ES File Explorer will show you the computer hard drive partitions and shared folders to access. Just click on any of them to access it.
7) You can now access any files including pictures, images, videos, movies, documents, songs etc from your computer or network hard drive on your android mobile phone or android tablet etc using WiFi. Just make sure that the folder/directory on your source computer/device has network sharing enabled.