The Files App Invokes iBooks but Doesn’t Show My ePub in iOS 11

I had a problem with with iOS 11 Beta 3. I couldn’t open an ePub file from Apple’s new Files app on the iPad – it would just invoke iBooks and leave me at the bookshelf with the ePub nowhere in sight. I opened up bug 33410770 and waited. My bug was closed and marked as a duplicate of 33148498. Just before beta 5, the main bug was closed. I installed beta 5 and still could not view my ePub in iBooks. Harrumph! When you’ve been duplicated to another bug, you have no insight into why it was closed or in what build the issues is fixed in. Maybe it will be fixed in beta 6? Nope. Maybe it will be fixed in beta 7? Nope.

OK, something really weird is going on. This seems like a basic function to me. What am I missing? Turns out, “Hide iCloud Books” was enabled in iBooks. After turning that off: Voila – there is my ePub with the “Available for download” icon.

My Outstanding Questions

  1. How did my ePub get there?
  2. Had it been there all along?
  3. Why does it have the “Available for download” icon? I just clicked on the ePub from the Files app – shouldn’t iBooks have imported the ePub from there?
  4. Does iBooks consider the ePub inbound from the Files app the same as the one coming from the cloud?
  5. If it wasn’t an ePub that was also in the could, what would the behavior have been?
  6. What is the correct behavior?