Workflow gallery iPad

We’ve covered automation apps for iOS in the past, and iOS 8 adds a lot of potential for what’s possible thanks to extensions for performing actions and sharing data from anywhere in the system. Today a new app called Workflow is joining the mix with a super simple and approachable way to set up actions at the tap of a button…

The app approaches workflow creation similar to Automator on OS X with drag and drop modules used to create tasks for running anytime, but the touch interface and friendlier design make it much more fun to use.

I’ll show you a fun action from my experience with Workflow below, but I recommend test driving Workflow on your iPhone or iPad for yourself if you’re at all interested in automating actions on iOS.


The sample action that Workflow’s launch tutorial has you create is very similar to this and interesting enough that I quickly created a modified version that’s very similar. Each module you see on the right was added from a list of available options on the left to create a this GIF maker using the iPad camera.

Playing the action prompts the camera to slide up with the ability to chose the front or back camera for each shot. After you take your fourth photo in this example, Workflow knows you’ve completed and the camera disappears bringing you right back to Workflow. The GIF making part happens in the background, as does the clipboard copying.

You could add an action to be prompted to send a message, but I like to do some things on my own. In this case, I jump over to the Messages app and begin to spam my friends with ridiculous GIFs that I created on the fly.

Workflow goes a step further, though, by allowing you to not only save actions to your library within the app, but actually create icons on your Home screen for quickly accessing without opening the app. The process works great.


You can also tinker around with creating actions for running as extensions from the native action or share button around iOS. This capability really allows you to tinker with under-the-hood stuff by offering toggles for which types of media should support your action and in what instances.


Workflow is out now for iPhone and iPad on the App Store for $4.99 on sale for $2.99 to celebrate the launch. It’s techy enough to be useful, but it’s polished and friendly enough for anyone to have some fun. Try it out for yourself.

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About the Author

Zac Hall

Zac covers Apple news, hosts the 9to5Mac Happy Hour podcast, and created