Drafts 4.6 is now available on the App Store. This is a big update, with lots of general improvements and new features. We hope you’ll take the time to look them over.

Trash Can

Drafts now maintains the last 30 days worth of deleted drafts in a trash can, accessible with Inbox, Archive and other saved filters. Drafts in the trash can be restored, and will be restored with full version/action histories and other metadata.

Automatic Dark Mode

Automatic dark mode allows Drafts to switch between the dark theme and the last selected light theme (white or sepia) based on the brightness setting of the device. Automatic dark mode can be enabled in "Aa" appearance settings menu. Brightness threshold controls how low the device screen brightness should drop before switching between light and dark themes.

With iOS auto-brightness enabled on the device, Drafts will switch between themes based on the amount of ambient light in the room. For more details, see the appearance documentation.

Redesigned Today Widget

Simplified, cleaner look for Drafts' Today Widget. Tap anywhere on a draft in the list to jump directly to it in the app. For more information no using the Today Widget, visit the documentation.

Better Editing

Adjustments to line heights, margins and other general improvements have been made to text in the editor for better readability and fit on iPad, especially iPad Pro, sizes. Many other minor tweaks and convenience changes have been made like restoring last editing selection when opening a draft, reducing taps after running actions.

Box.com action steps

Similar to Dropbox or Google Drive action steps, Drafts can create, append and prepend to files in your Box.com account. For details on configurable values visit the documentation, or install a sample from the directory to get started:

“Open in Drafts” option for URLs

When enabled, a URL action step will open in Safari View Controller without leaving Drafts. Only http and https URLs can work with this setting. Great for actions which search the web. These examples search Google and DuckDuckGo for the current selected text without leaving Drafts:

Note: Swipe to dismiss the Safari View Controller is disabled when running on iOS 9.2 because of an iOS bug which prevents the host app from getting notified when the Safari view is dismissed. Apple has fixed this but in the iOS 9.3 betas and swipe to dismiss works when using Drafts 4.6 on iOS 9.3.

“Include Action” action step

This action step is configured with the name of another action in your action list. When run, the steps from that action are inserted into the current action as if they were defined there. More documentation

Apple Watch app

  • Watch app now has settings to enable/disable automatic capture when launching from glance or complication. These settings are available under the Drafts entry in the Apple Watch app on iPhone. They are separate settings, so you could configure the complication to auto-capture and not the glance. Auto-capture is a great feature, but sometimes the performance of the Watch makes it less desirable.
  • Pending inbox captures should be sorted in reverse chronological order.
  • Original capture time should be maintained when offline watch captures are imported into iPhone app.

Other Changes and Additions

  • Hundreds of new action icon options.
  • Tag helpers. When editing templates and fields in action steps which accept drafts tags, a new tag helper keyboard row is available which makes it easier to insert common tags like [[draft]], [[title]], etc.
  • “Hide toolbar while editing” setting now also hides status bar.
  • New /replaceRange URL scheme action: drafts4://x-callback-url/replaceRange?uuid=[[uuid]]&start=[selection_start]]&length=[[selection_length]]&text=[text to insert]. Replaces the text in the specified range in the specified draft. Visit URL scheme docs for details. This is useful when used as the x-success callback parameter in actions that call to apps which can return a result. Here are a couple of example applications:
    • Te:Replace: Sends selected text to Terminology to look. You can browse replacement works in Terminology and choose to send a new word back to Drafts and it will be replaced inline.
    • Blink Replace: Sends selected text as a search to Blink, letting you select an app from it’s affliate search tools and return to Drafts replacing the selected text with the affliate link generated by Blink.
  • Initial launch performance improvements.
  • Tapping a link in link mode opens link in Drafts with Safari View Controller.
  • Do not enforce “allow URLs to fire actions” security if Drafts itself is the source of the URL call. This means that actions inside Drafts that call Drafts’ own URL schemes - for example to call another action - will not force the URL security check.
  • Ability to select from a list of actions when configuring “Run Action” key, rather than having to type it in.
  • “Reset Saved Filters” options in Settings > Reset. Allows restore of default inbox/archive/flagged saved filter configuration.
  • Added [[selection_start]] and [[selection_length]] tags, mostly for use with new /replaceRange URL. These tags return the start index and length of the selected text in the current draft.
  • If action results in archive or delete after success and new draft is created, the new draft should be focused ready for editing.


  • Workaround for issue where dark keyboard could appear with white keys.
  • Issue where opening URLs (especially from actions bound to keyboard keys) could hang system.
  • Selecting a draft from draft list now properly restores and makes visible the last cursor position/selection.
  • Override host app tint color in Share extension for consistent appearance.
  • HTML Preview steps should update the title of the view after loading a page.
  • When importing new action the action list would not properly refresh to show the action. This could also cause a crash if an action was then deleted from the list before it refreshed.
  • Swiping between saved filters in drafts list would not properly apply sort order changes.
  • New draft button in draft list should focus new draft for editing.

Keep Up with Drafts!

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