Popular Mac Writing App 'Ulysses' Makes iPhone Debut

Wednesday March 9, 2016 12:00 AM PST by Tim Hardwick

Ulysses saw its first universal app for iOS hit the App Store today, bringing the popular distraction-free Mac writing software to the iPhone for the first time.

Ulysses app
Ulysses Mobile for iPhone and iPad features cross-platform iCloud synchronization, Spotlight integration, iPad Pro optimizations, and support for 3D Touch, Split View and Slide Over on compatible devices.

Surprisingly, the 2.5 update also brings many of the text editor's desktop features to all iOS devices, including dark and light writing modes, text statistics, writing goals, tools for Markdown, footnotes, code, annotations, and sort/split/merge options for sheets and groups.

Both iPhone and iPad users can now add pictures, links or notes to their text, customize the color palette, and export from Ulysses' unified text library in a range of formats, including DOCX files, ebooks, PDF, and online publishing platform Medium.

Automatic scheduled backups have also made the port, while a sharing extension has been added allowing users to send content from third-party apps directly to the app.

iPhone Ulysses
Additionally, desktop and iOS users can now import text created with Word into their Ulysses library, so that text elements such as headings, emphases and footnotes remain intact.

The cross-platform update also brings under-the-hood improvements to the Mac app, enhancing speed, stability, and iCloud integration.

Ulysses Mobile is available on the App Store at an introductory price of $19.99 ($24.99 thereafter) and as a free upgrade for existing users. [Direct Link]

Ulysses for Mac is available on the Mac App Store priced at $44.99. [Direct Link]

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
53 months ago
$45 + another $25 for the whole device lineup of a barebones text editor? Hipsterdom at its finest.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
53 months ago

I would't call it bear bones. I have been using it for over a year for lecture notes. That's not an *intended* use according to the developer, but I have been able to customise it so well that it has been PERFECT for my lectures.

Why shouldn't it be the intended use? I think the intended use is to capture the written word, so that would be the case for lecture notes. Of course, if you have e.g. a lot of hand-drawn illustrations, then it's probably not the best tool.

I have a whole novel in Ulysses. A 100,000 word project which is basically "done" and going through the fifth revision now. I started out in Pages, but that children's toy became useless after about the third chapter. Ulysses on the other hand is a tool for serious writing, and the iOS to OS X synch made it more than worth the price. Only thing that bothers me is that some rather basic things are missing, as I mentioned before. I have a feeling that none of the Ulysses developers ever used their software for a bigger project themselves.

In any case, I think all those $0.99 apps or IAP financed apps have made people believe that software shouldn't cost more than a few bucks. Wordstar 6.0 cost $500 when it was released in 1990! Even at two digit prices for a basic word processor, I feel we are living in a golden age of affordable software. I think people have no idea how many man hours of work go into a software like that and how often this kind of software has to sell at such low prices to at least break even.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
53 months ago
Well, another situation where if the shoe fits, wear it.

If it doesn't, don't cram your foot in.

Some folks think it's too expensive. Some love it.

I'm going to wear this shoe. It's not cheap by any means, but then again, I think folks tend to quickly forget that developers actually spend time working and maintaining their apps. Everyone loves stuff for free until they need to buy groceries.

So in other words, if you find value using this software, then buy it.

Personally, time is money. I don't make a ton at writing, but I'm working on 2 projects.

If I can fling an app open and whack the keyboard or dictate knowing it will sync, being ready for me to open somewhere else the next time the writing urge (or deadline!) hits me, well, then I'm a-ok with the price.

Take the cost and divide it by how many times a day or month you write.

Is it worth it?

Oh and if you're writing for income, it should be a dead easy tax write off which means the cost just went down by about 50%. Just keep your receipt and hand it in to your accountant/bookkeeper/software of your choice :)

= no brainer.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
53 months ago
I've been using Ulysses for all of my writing for the past couple years, and it's been a terrific platform. I love the workspace, and it handles whatever I throw at it without issue. Also an export engine that while complex is way more powerful than I expected. I've written one NaNoWriMo using it, and a couple of other books with word counts surpassing 150K. I've found it to be a really solid and lovely writing environment. The fact that I can now make a start of my work on the iPhone and then move seamlessly to either iPad or Mac without thinking about it is pretty cool.

FWIW, I totally recommend it. And if you saw me, the last damned thing you'd think would be "hipster". I can't even grow a beard. :p
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
53 months ago
I think I can wait for Scrivener to come out soon for iOS (Currently it is in internal beta according to the developer).
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
53 months ago

Don't need don't want

And no one cares that you don't.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Apple Acquires Weather App Dark Sky

Tuesday March 31, 2020 10:22 am PDT by Juli Clover
Apple has acquired weather app Dark Sky, Dark Sky's developers announced today. Dark Sky is one of the most popular weather apps on the App Store, known for its accuracy and storm warnings. Our goal has always been to provide the world with the best weather information possible, to help as many people as we can stay dry and safe, and to do so in a way that respects your privacy. There is no ...

Zoom Accused of Misleading Users With 'End-to-End Encryption' Claims Amid Other Security Issues [Updated]

Wednesday April 1, 2020 2:47 am PDT by Tim Hardwick
Zoom is facing fresh scrutiny today following a report that the videoconferencing app's encryption claims are misleading. Zoom states on its website and in its security white paper that the app supports end-to-end encryption, a term that refers to a way of protecting user content so that the company has no access to it whatsoever. However, an investigation by The Intercept reveals that...

Case for Upcoming Low-Cost iPhone Shows Up at Best Buy With Alleged April 5 Stock Date

Monday March 30, 2020 4:25 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Apple has a new low-cost iPhone in the works, which is supposed to be launching sometime in the first half of 2020. Given the ongoing situation in the United States and other countries, it's been unclear if the device is going to launch within the planned timeline, but there are signs that it could be coming soon. We started seeing cases for the new low-cost iPhone back in early February,...

Bloomberg: Apple's 5G iPhone Still on Schedule for Fall Launch, But Future Products Could Be Delayed

Monday March 30, 2020 2:40 am PDT by Tim Hardwick
Apple's 5G iPhone is still on track to launch within the company's typical annual fall release schedule, according to a new Bloomberg report on filed on Monday. Signs are that Apple's Chinese-centric manufacturing -- of which Hon Hai is the linchpin -- is slowly getting back on track. The next iPhones with 5G wireless capabilities remain on schedule to launch in the fall, partly because mass...

Testing Brydge's New Pro+ Keyboard With Trackpad for iPad Pro

Monday March 30, 2020 2:04 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Well ahead of when Apple introduced trackpad support in iOS 13.4, Brydge announced an iPad Pro keyboard with a built-in multi-touch trackpad. We have one of Brydge's new Pro+ keyboards on hand, and thought we'd check it out to see how it works with Apple's new 2020 iPad Pro models. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. The Brydge Pro+ keyboard is similar in design to...

Apple's Work on New Upcoming Products Progressing Normally as Employees Adjust to Telecommuting

Monday March 30, 2020 11:58 am PDT by Juli Clover
Apple's development of upcoming products is progressing as usual despite the fact that Apple employees around the world are working from home, according to a new report today out from Bloomberg. Apple is still working on new versions of the HomePod, Apple TV, MacBook Pro, budget iPads, Apple Watch, iPhone, and iMac, all of which could be released "as early as later this year" and have been...

Apple Releases ProRes RAW Beta for Windows

Monday March 30, 2020 9:33 am PDT by Juli Clover
Apple today released ProRes RAW for Windows in a beta capacity (via Mark Gurman), with the software designed to allow ProRes RAW and ProRes RAW HQ video files to be watched in compatible applications on Windows machines. According to Apple, the software will let the files be played within several Adobe apps: Adobe After Effects (Beta) Adobe Media Encocder (Beta) Adobe Premiere...

Apple Configurator 2 Updated With New Features, Including Support for Restoring Firmware on 2019 Mac Pro

Tuesday March 31, 2020 5:34 am PDT by Joe Rossignol
Apple Configurator 2 has been updated to version 2.12 with several improvements, including support for restoring firmware on the 2019 Mac Pro. The release notes:• Added support for restoring firmware on the 2019 Mac Pro • Allow access to websites using TLS 1.0 and 1.1 • VPN: Configure Provider Designated Requirement for Custom SSL connection type • VPN: Configure network options for ...

Seemingly Unreleased Version of Logic Pro X With Live Loops Appears on Apple's Education Site [Updated]

Sunday March 29, 2020 7:23 am PDT by Hartley Charlton
Update: Apple has replaced the Logic Pro X image with an older version. Original story follows. A seemingly unreleased version of Logic Pro X has appeared on Apple's education site, as spotted by a Reddit user. The image from Apple's education products page shows a 16-inch MacBook Pro running Logic Pro X, but with a familiar interface that looks extremely similar to GarageBand's Live Loops ...

Apple's 2020 MacBook Air vs. 2020 iPad Pro

Wednesday April 1, 2020 2:45 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Apple in March updated both the MacBook Air and the iPad Pro, and with the iPad Pro increasingly positioned as a computer replacement, we thought we'd compare both new machines to see how they measure up and which one might be a better buy depending on user needs. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. We're comparing the base model 12.9-inch iPad Pro and the base model...