In this video, I will share 6 secret features in the iOS mail app that I have stumbled upon over years of using it!
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**** A truncated transcript follows. A full transcript can be found at www.marblejar.net. ****
Hi, everyone! This is Lara Hammock from the Marble Jar channel and in today’s video, I will share 6 secret features in the iOS mail app that I have stumbled upon over years of using it!
iOS Mail is a pretty basic app. Apple has added some functionality to it over the years, but it is still pretty bare bones. Even though I have tried out other mail apps, I keep coming back to iOS Mail — maybe because I like the integration with other iOS functions, maybe because I’m used to the way it works. Either way, I’m going to share some of the secrets that I’ve learned over the years. Some you may know — some may be new! First up
1 - Shake to Undo
Okay — this is a basic iOS feature that works across all of its apps, but I feel like it is particularly important to know when working in Mail. If you accidentally delete a bunch of text, which I do ALL THE TIME, you can undo by shaking your device. This is a little less important since recently Apple added an undo button that appears when you are composing an email, but this is useful when you have deleted a message by accident or moved it to the wrong folder. So, I delete this email by mistake. I shake my device to get the Undo prompt, hit Undo, and now it’s back in my inbox.
2 - Draft Emails Shortcut
This took me a little while to figure this out, but say you are writing an email and want to save it for later. We all know that it is in your draft email folder, right? You get back to it by going to Mailboxes, then finding the Drafts folder, and selecting the draft email you were working on. Here’s the shortcut: go up to the new message icon, hold it for a couple of seconds and all of your draft messages come right up. Nifty, right?
3 - Unthread Emails
Starting with iOS 10, Apple started threaded emails by default. So, that means it groups all related emails together, which seems like it would be really helpful. The problem is that some of the behavior that they built into grouped messages, such as what happens when you want to delete one message from the thread, were making me crazy. I was losing emails and deleting important things by accident. I try to get my inbox to zero once per day, so I can generally locate all of the emails in my thread and I really don’t mind deleting message individually if it means that I’m not losing important emails. So, I turned off Organize By Thread by going into Settings, then Mail, then the Threading area. Now, each message appears separately, which makes me WAY less frustrated.
4 - Minimize while Composing
This is a new feature that I LOVE. Say you are composing a mail message and you need to check something in a saved folder. You used to have to hit Cancel, then Save, then go do your research. Then to get the mail message back, you would have to search for it in Drafts, or use that handy shortcut I showed you earlier. Even so, it was a lot of keystrokes. Now, all you have to do is drag the mail down to the bottom of the page like this to minimize it. To get it back, just tap the subject line down here. You could try to drag it back up, but that confuses the iPad sometimes and you’ll get the multitasking screen, so just tap. Remember this doesn’t save the email in the draft folder, it just holds it temporarily.
5 - Makeshift Bullets
I’m a person who thinks in spreadsheets and bullets. So I find it annoying that the Mail app doesn’t have a bullet format function. Here’s how I create a makeshift bullet: switch the keyboard to the numbers view, if you press and hold down on the dash button you get several options, one of them looks a lot like a bullet! Now this is really just a symbol character, so the text won’t indent on the second line, but it works in a pinch. And finally,
6 - Return button to Advance Fields
I honestly just figure this out a couple of weeks ago. When you are composing an email, I’ve always thought that you needed tap in the space to go to the next field. For example, after putting in an email address, in order to advance to the subject line, I would tap my finger in the subject field. The problem is that this required me to take my fingers off of the keyboard, which was slowing me down. What I realized is that by hitting the return button on the keyboard, I could advance to the subject field and then to the email body field without taking my fingers off of the keyboard. For me, this saves a little time and momentum.
So those are my six secrets! Maybe you already had those all figured out, but those of the ones that I have discovered over time. Please let me know if you have more that you would like to share! Comments are always appreciated and thanks for watching!