How to Build Your Own Apps with Workflow for the iPhone and iPad

Workflow is a cool new app for the iPhone and iPad that lets you automate actions that otherwise would be tedious, or even impossible without other apps. You can even save your workflows so they show up on your Home screen just like any other app. Read on to learn how to build your own apps in Workflow.

You'll need to start by purchasing and downloading Workflow. It's currently priced at US$2.99, but that's going up to $4.99 after at some point. Once Workflow is installed on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, here's what to do:

  • Start by building a workflow. The app walks you through the process when it's first launched.
  • After building your workflow, tap Share. It's the square icon with an arrow pointing up through it's top.

Tap the Share icon to turn your workflow into an appTap the Share icon to turn your workflow into an app

  • Choose Add to Home Screen. That takes you to Safari where you'll finish turning your workflow into an app.
  • In Safari, tap Share.

Tap Safari's Share icon to send your new app to your Home ScreenTap Safari's Share icon to send your new app to your Home Screen

  • Select Add to Home Screen.
  • Tap Add.

Your workflow, transformed into an appYour workflow, transformed into an app

Now your workflow should be on your Home screen along with every other app you've installed. Workflow's developers found a clever way to use the Web app feature built into iOS and Mobile Safari to create apps, which is awesome because that saves you from launching the app and finding the workflow you want to use every single time you need it.

Workflow isn't a replacement for Apple's own coding environment, and you can't offer your home-rolled apps through the App Store. That said, it's a fantastic tool for building your own tools for automated tasks, and as more developers add Workflow support to their apps, it'll be even more useful.