iOS 9 tip: Marking up attachments in the Mail app is easier than ever

In iOS 9, you don't need to leave Mail to mark up PDFs or images, and then sign and return the attachments. Here's how to use this new time-saving feature.

Image: Cory Bohon

Have you ever received an email with an attachment to review, but in order to mark up the attached document, you needed to open the corresponding app, and then resend the document? This workflow is far from ideal, and Apple agrees. With iOS 9, a new tool lets you easily mark up a document from within Mail, re-attach it to the email, and send it back in the same message thread.

To begin marking up an email attachment, perform the following steps.

  1. Open the Mail app and select a message containing an image or PDF document.
  2. Tap and hold the attachment you wish to mark up.
  3. Select Markup And Reply from the action sheet that appears (Figure A).
  4. Tap and hold the attachment you wish to mark up, and select the Markup button to open the editor (Figure B).

Figure A

The Markup And Reply option will appear in the bottom row of the action sheet.
Image: Screenshot by Cory Bohon

Figure B

In the Markup editor, you can draw, annotate, and sign documents with ease.
Image: Screenshot by Cory Bohon

With the Markup editor open, you can change color of the drawing, alter the thickness of the lines, add callouts by drawing with your finger, add text by tapping the text box button, or add your signature by tapping the Signature button.

When you are done marking up the document, you can tap Done to attach the marked up item back to the email reply (Figure C); or, you can tap Cancel to quit without saving the edited changes.

Figure C

The marked up document will be re-attached to the original email reply without skipping a beat.
Image: Screenshot by Cory Bohon

Also see

By Cory Bohon

Cory Bohon is an indie developer specializing in iOS and OS X development. He runs a software company called Cocoa App and is also a developer at MartianCraft. He was introduced to technology at an early age and has been writing about his favorite te...