This is something that I’ve been thinking about off and on for a few months. As I get into the reviews of the Pro versions of SharePoint applications on iOS, the features of some of these applications allow content to be edited locally on a device so this has got me thinking again.
The question is, should this be allowed to happen in all instances?
If the person with access to the site has been granted Read, Limited Access or View Only access that will be enforced when they access the same site via a browser why should they get different access when using an application?
What happens when they try to check in their changes? The application will be denied access to write back and the user now has content on their device that is different to what other site users have access to.
For me, the main benefits of using SharePoint are lost at this point in time specifically version control, version history and single source of truth.
The mobile staff member will have to resort to emailing content to someone else who may or may not add the content to the site. If they do, the person who eventually uploads to the site will be recorded as the person making the change, not the actual person who did make the change – what happens if the content is audited?
It is possible the mobile user could ask for and be granted a change of access but will their changes on their device be lost at the next sync when the site is downloaded again?
Will they blame the application or will this reflect badly on SharePoint?
Applications Present State
SharePlus appears to honour site permissions now. If a user only has limited access, their permissions within the application are limited to making content a favourite. Where I can get to the point of “Edit in Web”, the content opens in Office Web Apps and I get the misleading message that I am not licensed to use the Web App.
I admit, the application does not stop the file being taken from the site and edited elsewhere but for me this is a good start.
Filamente doesn’t appear to honour site permissions in the same way. A user still has the ability via the UI to edit and delete items.
There is no visible error within the application and any edits are lost when the application re-syncs. Any attempt to delete appears to be successful (no error message) but the content does not disappear.
There is only an error if I try to check out content when I get an HTTP/1.1 500 Internal Server Error.
Colligo Briefcase currently does not offer any in-built features to edit or delete content and it does not support check in/ check out.
The application does allow content to be opened in other applications on the device.Back to top
In my personal opinion, there is likely a reason why people are given limited access. My opinion is that a SharePoint application must reflect the permissions granted within the site that the application is providing access to.
If the mobile member of staff needs another level of access they should be granted this at a site level so that they get a consistent user experience both mobile and via a desktop browser.
I would personally like to see the application restrict the ability to edit/delete and check in/check out content based on permission levels like SharePlus currently does.
I would also like to see a restriction on the “Open In..” functionality based on the site permissions as well to prevent users from editing content elsewhere that they cannot add back into the site.
This is just my opinion and would like to know what others may think.
Please spare some time to answer this survey and let me know your thoughts:Back to top