What is Settings > Accounts > Nextcloud > Sync for?

I searched for it but it is pretty hard to find any information or I was just too stupid to find.

Anyhow, what does the option do?
It was turned off per default after installing Nextcloud from Android, if I turn it on, it drains 30% of my overall battery compared to the rest of the apps.

What are the benefits of turning it off or on?
What does it do ?
Why is it so battery intensive compared to other Account "Sync"s?

The same question… Any ideas?

@Andy can you help with this?

I don’t know much about this part, maybe @mario or @tobiasKaminsky know more about the reason and usage of the account sync of Android.


This simply syncs all keep-available-offline files.

Good to know, but does opening the NextCloud App also sync the offline content and update it to the latest state (without that turned on)?

Because the sync setting is eating battery like crazy, I tried that once and it drained my battery within half a day. Whatever it is doing in the background is more battery intense than any other “sync” on my Android Device

No, it does not. You have to manually push “Sync”. In my opinion, it is the right behaviour, because I am a fan of “manually” or “automatically”; something in between is/can be confusing and incalculable.

Before I started using the Android app, I did a lot of testing and here are two of my thoughts about the sync and offline files thing:

  • There are fundamental UX problems with “offline files” and “Sync”. First of all the “Sync” is not sync! It is kind of one-way sync or pull, but neither mirroring. It is nowhere communicated or obvious, how your offline files are handled. What happens when I create a file locally in my “offline [available] files”. Is it pushed to server, when doing the sync? Or will it be even deleted, if the next pull from server is done? What happens when the locally created file has a filename, which is already occupied on the server, but has not been pulled from the server at the time of the local creation? And so on! I now know what happens in different cases and how I have to use this feature of the app so that I won’t run into problems, but only after I did extensive testing. That should not be the standard requirement for using the app. There is much room for non-technical improvement in making the app reliable and usable for everyone.
    So, for me, it is not as easy as said:
  • Of course, a reliable, automatic, highly configurable and efficient two-way sync would be the royal solution, but the thing is, it is pretty difficult to achieve it in this dimension on mobile. There are so many Android versions out there and in the last years, many vendors did their own power management on top, so that, when it comes to background tasks/sync, apps behave very different on different devices. On iOS, the situation is very prohibitive, so that some things can’t be even done. At the end, you have a accurate and “bug free” app, but without adjusting and optimizing it for many different devices and platforms, the app seems to be buggy and not reliable and not consistent. The forum here would be flooded with even more device specific problems or the ratings in the play store would lower. So after all, the royal solution maybe would be a simpler not as feature rich but more reliable and reproducible behaviour; especially if your man power and funds are limited. In this point, the app is already developed in the right direction, IMHO.