IFTTT is a web service that lets you automate the web, it makes use of APIs of different services and allows users to create ‘recipes’ that define what an action or event on one service will do on the other one. For users who can’t find services to do this for them and don’t have the skills to tinker with APIs themselves, the service is simply amazing. To make things even better, it has now released an iOS app. IFTTT for iOS allows you to connect apps on your iPhone and iPad with other services and just like with the web interface, allows users to create their very own recipes from the app for let’s say, saving your iOS photos to Dropbox or posting them to instagram. If you’re already an IFTTT account, the app will sync your current recipes to your phone so that you can edit or activate/deactivate them any time you like.
Sign in to the service and start looking for recipes, or create your own by tapping the cauldron button at the top-right.
Creating recipes works just the way it does on the web; you select two channels to connect, where the first one is what you can call the ’cause’ that defines the trigger activity, and the second one works as the ‘effect’ i.e. what action takes place as a result of the trigger activity. Tap the plus button to create you first recipe. On the ‘Create a Recipe’ screen, tap the large blue plus sign to add your first channel. All your current recipes are listed in the ‘Recipes’ drawer’ and each time there is a new event for a recipe, it will be listed under it.
We tested the app out by connecting Instagram to Tumblr so that each time a new photo was uploaded to Instagram, it was also posted to Tumbltr as a photo post. You will need to sign in to Instagram and Tumblr, and allow them both to connect with IFTTT. For each app/service you connect, you will get a set of predefined triggers and actions to choose from.
Using IFTTT on an iOS device is different from using it on the web because the service can run in the background and execute your recipes. On the web, you don’t need to have IFTTT open in a tab; it will work silently with you never ever having to check up on it. With iOS, things are different because apps can’t run in the background so each time a trigger is set off, you will have to open IFTTT and execute the recipe yourself. To do so, open the recipe and tap the ‘Check Now’ button.
Things do work slightly differently on the iOS app because there is still some manual work involved but on the upside, adding recipes from the app is even easier than adding them on the web interface. Should IFTTT develop an Android app, it will be able to do much more because Android puts no restrictions on apps working in background.