Alternatives to Dispatch?

I’ve been using Dispatch to export emails to OmniFocus iOS for a few years now. But with the exception of updating it to support Google’s new sign on a few months ago, it looks like that app is abandonware.

Besides the OmniSync Server mail drop solution (which doesn’t support linking back to the original email) what other options are there? I was about to check out Airmail but based on recent reviews it seems that app isn’t a useable option at this time.

Not sure what you mean with that. I am not a big fan of Airmail for various reasons, but the Omnifocus integration works very well. You can create a new task from an email (Airmail actually opens Omnifocus, it is not a card popping up), the subject is the task name, the email content is saved in the note, and at the bottom of the note you have a link to the original email. That linkage to the email works very well.

Based on the reviews in the App Store for the last few versions Airmail is very buggy.

Okay, I actually haven’t encountered any bugs, and I am using it for quite a while. I dislike the fact that they focus too much on a Google API implementation for Gmail, and less on a proper IMAP implementation. But the Omnifocus integration works fine for me.

1 Like

I have never had a problem with Airmail. I have used it daily in iOS and MacOS. OmniFocus integration is tight, but my favorite feature is snoozing emails. Instead of cluttering up OmniFocus, I simply snooze an email that needs to be dealt with at a future date and it is auto-magically returned to me when I need it.

1 Like

What I like about Dispatch is that you can get message:// links which work on the Mac. I’ve tried to like Airmail. I know it has worked hard at providing many useful integrations, but it just isn’t for me.


Wow. I just switched from Apple’s email service to Airmail because the Apple email host was far too buggy.

I’m happy with Airmail 3.

Yea that’s what I like about it too. Although they don’t work right across platforms (e.g., iOS) and in some cases it seems there’s some sort of time limit with the link even though the message still exists in my Archive folder.

What would be really nice is if OmniGroup added a link back feature to Mail Drop. That way links work across iOS and Mac without the need for a third party. I emailed them about adding this. They have a feature request open for it. As usual “if enough people…” we might see it in the future.

Me too. I ended up buying it anyway and am using it now to send selected messages to OF. I do like that it only takes one swipe and a press to send to OF and archive. It also seems stable, I haven’t yet run into any of the crippling bugs some of the reviews suggest exist. But the interface is just odd and seems cluttered even with most display options disabled.

[quote=“jdskee, post:8, topic:32865, full:true”]
Although they don’t work right across platforms (e.g., iOS) and in some cases it seems there’s some sort of time limit with the link even though the message still exists in my Archive folder.[/quote]

Yep, although I have found logging back into mail accounts occasionally has reset links going forward. It is a bit buggy

I bought Airmail as well, but I hate the way it adds loads of extra folders to my email accounts. I don’t know if you have links on the iOS version whether they would work with Mail on the Mac (I suspect not). The interface isn’t as nice as either Spark or Newton, both of which I have tried as well.

With drag and drop working from Mail in iOS 11 on iPad, I’m hoping this means proper share sheet functionality coming. Fingers crossed!


1 Like

It has always been buggy and that is not likely to change given that it I should produced by a very small company (of two people if I remember correctly). I was very surprised to hear they won an award at WWDC.

Thought I’d post an update. I went for broke and bought both Airmail iOS and macOS. I’m beginning to come around to and even like both. After nearly giving up in frustration at some oddball bugs (like signatures not working properly at all if you have the composer set to use plain text instead of rich text) I decided to sit with it for a few days. The macOS version is beginning to make sense conceptually to me and as a result is easier to navigate around. Instead of trying to obliterate the [Airmail] folder tree (which I didn’t like previously and is supposedly possible to disable although I couldn’t get that working even after contacting support) I let it sit as is and even tried the snooze feature a few times.

I’m still not entirely sold on how the UI works and looks and some of the inconsistencies therein. But in general I think it’s a workable solution. I even forgot how nice it is to attach a file from Dropbox to an email using Airmail iOS (this has been broken in Dispatch for a long time). At least until OmniGroup adds message:// linkbacks to OmniSync… ¯_(ツ)_/¯

I just thought I’d mention that with iOS 11, you’ll be able to drag an email message from the built-in Mail app directly to OmniFocus, and it will link back to the original message. (On iPads, anyway. iOS 11 doesn’t support drag and drop between apps on iPhones, unfortunately.)


Also, it works exactly as awesomely as one might expect. Thanks, @kcase and team!