Using Drafts to Easily Get Text To and From Your iPhone

iPhone Mail IconAs I mentioned in the My Netbook: The iPhone article, my iPhone is central to my life. But one area that’s been a challenge is getting text to and from it. As I mentioned in the article, most of what I write on the iPhone is blog posts where any formatting is done after the fact. I find myself in situations where I need to be able to modify text from various computers and my iPhone. For instance, yesterday I was heading to the grocery store after work. I had a list going and my wife called and added her list which reminded me of something else, and then she called back and … well you get the idea.

I’ve flipped around between QuickOffice, Documents to Go, and Notes to handle this, but I was never satisfied. Notes and Documents to Go go require me to be on my Mac and sync to it. That’s overkill for a shopping list. I don’t mind the iPhone keyboard, but typing “2 cases of water” with another phone jammed in my ear is awkward; it’s much easier to just type it on my work computer. Plus, syncing often just feels like a bother, doesn’t it? Not to mention lengthy with the “let me me nip off to the pub while this backup runs” issue that’s back with 3.0.

What worked best was QuickOffice writing the file to an iDisk. But iDisk is all I would be using from MobileMe, and I just can’t get my mind around paying $99 a year for that convenience. Not to mention, handling simple text through the .doc format just seemed overkill. I could work off the cloud, but if I’m in a low signal area, I’m out of luck.

So, the solution I’ve found myself going with is using Drafts in the iPhone/Gmail web interface. I can create a draft, give it a title and merrily type away on the iPhone. When I save it, it syncs to my Gmail account where I can edit the draft on any computer that’s connected to the Internet. As long as I don’t put in a recipient, it wont get accidentally sent. I also don’t need to worry about initiating a sync; it all happens in the background.

How about you? What solutions to this problem have you found?

iPhone Mail Drafts

iPhone Mail Drafts

Gmail Drafts Screen

Gmail Drafts Screen

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