Things 3.3 Update Brings New 'Mail to Things' Feature to the To-Do App

by

Popular to-do app Things reached version 3.3 today and gained a new feature that enables users to generate to-dos from anywhere by sending an email to their Things Cloud account.

Previously, Things offered four ways to add to-dos: Quick Entry, Siri, 3D Touch, and the Add to Things extension. However, the limitation of these methods is that they're only available from within the Apple ecosystem. To make the process of adding tasks more accessible and convenient, Mail to Things allows users to send emails to a special private address, which automatically converts them into to-dos and adds them to their Things task list.


The Mail to Things feature basically lets users add a "Quick Entry" when they're using other platforms, such as their Windows PC at work, or an Android phone. It also gives them the option of sharing their @things.email address with a partner or colleague for delegating to-dos.

To enable the new feature on the Things mobile app, open Settings, located at the bottom of the interface, and toggle on the Mail to Things option, after which a private @things.email address will be generated. The same option can be found on macOS within Things' preference pane.

Emails sent to the address are converted into to-dos and placed into the user's Inbox in Things. The main rule to remember when sending messages to the Things Cloud is that the email's subject becomes the to-do's title, and the rest goes into the notes. (At present, there's no way to set tags or any other metadata via email.)

A few other things are worth noting. If an email is longer than 2,000 characters, it will be truncated by Things. Also, the app only supports plain text, so any formatting in emails will be lost. Lastly, file attachments are not supported and will be ignored.

In addition to the feature's basic functionality, Mail to Things also creates new opportunities for workflows that involve sending emails. With apps and services such as Workflow, IFTTT, and Zapier, users can build workflows that create to-dos automatically. A few examples using Workflow include sending to-dos to Things, copying the clipboard to Things, and dictating to Things.

Things 3 can be downloaded from the Mac App Store for $49.99 and from the iOS App Store. The iPad version is priced at $19.99 [Direct Link] while the iPhone version (which includes Apple watch support) is priced at $9.99. [Direct Link] A 15-day trial of Things for Mac is available on the Cultured Code website.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
38 months ago
I think they put off adding this feature for so long because they were too busy just trying to finish the full rewrites for Things 3 macOS/iOS while also keeping Things 2.x maintained for iOS and watchOS changes.

Once they got Things 3 out the door in May, the updates have been much more frequent than previous years, and they now seem to finally have the time to add long-requested features like this and repeating to-dos in Projects, etc. It's good to see. (the pace of updates in the Things 3 TestFlight betas has been quite rapid, I must say)
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
38 months ago
What we really need is a web API so that other developers (like me) can create very useful addons or apps.

Really want that API. So much I can do with things...
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
38 months ago

I bought all three Things Apps. I liked it for a while but Todoist was way more powerful.

This new feature doesn't seem that useful to me. How about, building a Web App instead?

It should be quite flexible, because with this you can now use other services/automations to remotely create tasks in Things, from Windows or Android, or via IFTTT, etc. I think they wanted something that would be "normal user"-friendly at first, and email is something people are used to and understand, and it provides a very simple way to take an email and turn it into a task, which is a common use case/scenario.

While I don't think they're going to ever do a web app, as aloshka suggests, it would be really handy if they'd add a web API for this. Maybe this email feature is the first step towards that. Certainly a web API is something that I'd make use of (and it'd hopefully allow defining due dates and similar), but for now being able to programatically generate emails to get tasks into Things is going to be great.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
38 months ago
I hated on Things, hard, for a long time. But I must admit v3 and the new faster development ar wonderful. I am pleased to have purchased all three apps for each platform. It’s a great app, amazing cloud syncing, and solid design.

Well done Cultured Code.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
38 months ago
I think OmniFocus had this feature already years ago?
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
38 months ago
I bought all three Things Apps. I liked it for a while but Todoist was way more powerful.

This new feature doesn't seem that useful to me. How about, building a Web App instead?
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

'A New iOS Update is Now Available' Popping Up Repeatedly in iOS 14 Beta [Fixed: New Beta Available]

Thursday October 29, 2020 6:11 pm PDT by
Many users running iOS 14 beta are reporting that they are seeing a dialog box pop up repeatedly asking them to update from the latest iOS 14 beta. Threads in our forums, Reddit, and Twitter are reporting the issue. The dialog has been appearing for a few days now, but as of tonight has started appearing more frequently, every time an iPhone is unlocked. There's been further discussion in...

First iPhone 12 Mini Hands-On Video Surfaces [Update: Video Pulled]

Wednesday October 28, 2020 1:21 pm PDT by
Apple's iPhone 12 mini and the iPhone 12 Pro Max aren't set to be available until November 13, but a Romanian YouTuber got his hands on the iPhone 12 mini and showed it off today, offering a size comparison between the iPhone 12 and the 12 mini along with going over some of the device's features. The iPhone 12 mini is identical to the iPhone 12 in design and functionality, but it has a...

Apple One is Now Available: Save Money by Bundling Apple Music, iCloud Storage, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade, and More

Friday October 30, 2020 7:47 am PDT by
Apple One bundles are now available in the United States and over 100 other countries, allowing customers to subscribe to multiple Apple services through a single plan, including Apple Music, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade, iCloud, and more. To sign up for Apple One on an iPhone: Open Settings App Tap on Your Name at the top Tap on Subscriptions Tap on Apple One The prompt for Apple One...

iPhone 12 Ceramic Shield Still 'Scratches at Level 6 With Deeper Grooves at Level 7' in Mohs Hardness Test

Wednesday October 28, 2020 7:10 am PDT by
iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro models feature a new Ceramic Shield front cover that is "tougher than any smartphone glass," according to Apple, but the displays on the devices still have similar scratch resistance as previous iPhones based on a new test. Zack Nelson today shared his much-anticipated iPhone 12 Pro durability test on his YouTube channel JerryRigEverything, and based on the Mohs...

Apple CEO Tim Cook: 'More Exciting Things' in Store For This Year

Thursday October 29, 2020 2:20 pm PDT by
During today's earnings call for the fourth fiscal quarter of 2020 (third calendar quarter), Cook said that while he doesn't want to give too much away, "this year has a few more exciting things in store." Cook is likely speaking about the Apple Silicon Macs, as Apple has previously said the first Apple Silicon Mac will be coming before the end of 2020. There are rumors of a third fall event ...

2020 iPad Air vs. iPad Pro: Hands-On Comparison

Tuesday October 27, 2020 3:03 pm PDT by
Apple announced the new 2020 fourth-generation iPad Air in September, but the new tablets just started shipping out to customers last Friday. We picked one up and thought we'd do a hands-on comparison with the iPad Pro, which was last updated in March, because both tablets are about as powerful and share many similarities. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Design and ...

After Mocking Apple, Samsung May Remove Power Adapter From Galaxy S21 Box

Tuesday October 27, 2020 4:29 pm PDT by
Samsung's Galaxy S21, coming in 2021, may not include a power adapter or headphones in the box, according to reports from Korean media sites highlighted by SamMobile. Rumors earlier this year also said that Samsung was considering removing these accessories from future smartphone models, but that didn't stop Samsung from mocking Apple for selling the iPhone 12 models without a power adapter...

Apple Releases First macOS Big Sur 11.0.1 Beta to Developers [Update: Public Beta Available]

Wednesday October 28, 2020 10:15 am PDT by
Apple today seeded a new macOS Big Sur 11.0.1 beta to developers for testing purposes, with the new beta replacing the existing macOS Big Sur 11 beta 10 update that was released two weeks ago. The macOS Big Sur beta can be downloaded through the Apple Developer Center and once the appropriate profile is installed, subsequent betas will be available through the Software Update mechanism in...

Apple One Service Bundles Set to Launch Tomorrow, Fitness+ Coming This Quarter

Thursday October 29, 2020 1:39 pm PDT by
Apple in September announced Apple One, a new series of services bundles that will let Apple device customers purchase several services together in one package instead of separately, saving money for those who use multiple Apple service products. Ahead of Apple's earnings call, Apple CFO Luca Maestri told Bloomberg that Apple One is set to launch on Friday, October 30. Apple One Bundle...

PSA: Apple One Premier Bundle Only Available in US, UK, Canada, and Australia

Friday October 30, 2020 2:39 am PDT by
Apple's new Apple One series of services bundles launches on Friday in over 100 countries and regions, but the top Premier tier will be limited to the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, and Canada. The limited rollout of the $29.95 Premier tier is down to the fact that Apple News+ is currently only available in the above countries. Apple News+ is exclusive to the Premier tier,...