Send Back to Host App from Extension

Drafts is a phenomenal tool for capturing text and sending it efficiently to another app for further processing. But what about text that lives in another app? I’ll give one example, but the use cases are countless:

I rely on DEVONthink for organizing my digital life. It’s a great app, but their text editor is as basic as they come. The note interface has a “share” option, though, and since it’s just text, Drafts appears as a share extension. The modal interface allows you to “save” to Drafts and return to DEVONthink, or “open” in Drafts for further processing.

A third option, allowing me to send my edits back to the host app, would be a game changer.

You should look into x-callback-url, which is an inter-app communication system on iOS (also created by Greg, who made Drafts). You could put something together that would let you do that kind of thing.

As you describe it, it’s not something that’s possible on iOS with built-in APIs, unfortunately.

I suspected that was the case.

Follow-up question: is it possible to implement similar functionality, but engaged by selecting text and calling the extension from the “Share” option in the contextual menu; and then pasting over the original text upon return to the host app?