Since the introduction of the original iPhone, users have missed a feature that could make life a whole lot easier: the ability to use the iPod as a storage device. Users wanting to use the iPhone’s storage beyond iTunes have had jail breaking as their only option, but not all of us want to jailbreak. Most users don’t know about a handy little OS X app called PhoneView that lets iPhone users access these lost-features. They don’t offer a Windows solution right now, but in their FAQ they recommend a Windows app called TouchCopy.
The way PhoneView works is simple: just plug-in your iPhone or iPod Touch to your Mac, close iTunes if it’s open, and then launch PhoneView. It then loads up your data as you call on it, and in the side bar you’re given the following options: Disk, Contacts, Notes, Call Log, Messages, Web, Voicemail, Music, Videos, Audiobooks, Podcasts, Ringtones, Photos, and Voice Memos.
Clicking on any of these options will then let you gain access to whatever kind of media lies under it, so for example, clicking on Music will let you view and retrieve any DRM-free music that you may have on your device. (This is extremely useful if you need to recover your music after a system failure.) PhoneView can do this for any of the options in the sidebar, which came in handy for me personally when I needed to grab an important MMS I had received months ago. I simply launched PhoneView, scrolled through, grabbed the text and picture I needed, and was good to go.