2012-12-01

Next for iOS: better sharing

There is one important area where Android and Windows 8 are ahead of iOS: sharing data between applications [1]. Interestingly the foundations for improving things have already been laid. There are two parts when it comes to sharing: offering data and receiving data. The offering part already exists [2]: many apps have a “sharing” button. For example, things that can be done with the current page in Safari include: Create a bookmark, send the URL via email, tweet the URL.

Sharing in Safari on an iPhone

However, the receiving part is still limited. iOS has built-in support for email, Twitter and more, but you can’t plug into the system with your own app. That is likely to change soon, as explained in a tweet by @chpwn:

New, private iOS 6 feature Apple is using: remote view controllers. For example: the Mail compose view is now run in a separate process.
Consult [3] for details. I can’t wait for Dropbox to be a sharing plugin, then you can send files to it from everywhere and from it to any other sharing plugin. After the wish of better sharing has been fulfilled, I would love to be able to configure my default browser and my default maps app on iOS.

References:

  1. What iOS Should Learn from Android and Windows 8” by Ole Begemann
  2. The State of Sharing in iOS 6” by Ole Begemann
  3. Remote View Controllers in iOS 6” by Ole Begemann

No comments: