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Last month Apple acquired work automation app Workflow, which gives users the ability to create a variety of workflows that can translate articles, create GIFs from photos, calculate tips, and more. It's still unclear what Apple plans to do with the app in the future, but Workflow remains on the App Store in the wake of the acquisition, and now it appears that the app will no longer receive any noticeable updates down the line.

In an email from Workflow support sent to a user of the app, and discussed on the Accidental Tech Podcast (via iGeneration), the company has confirmed that there are "no further planned updates for Workflow," but it will continue to support the app's current functionality and has no intention to fully abandon it.

workflow-apps.jpg
"But just so you know, we have no further planned updates for Workflow. That being said we are continuing to support Workflow's current functionality and have no plans to end support, so let me know if you run across any bugs or crashes."
Following the acquisition, Apple made Workflow free to download on the App Store and reimbursed customers who had recently paid for the app. Certain features were also removed from the app after Apple bought it, including workflow functionality that involved Google Chrome, Pocket, LINE, Telegram, and Uber.

Apple is predicted to include Workflow directly into iOS in the future, at which time the current Workflow app will likely be removed from the App Store. As such, the app is now sitting in a sort of limbo stage between its recent acquisition -- where Apple also received Workflow team members Ari Weinstein, Conrad Kramer, and Nick Frey -- and a future integration in iOS, perhaps iOS 11 this fall.

Article Link: Workflow App Will Stop Releasing Updates in Wake of Apple Acquisition
 

VulchR

macrumors 68030
Jun 8, 2009
2,549
12,536
Scotland
I hope Apple use the Workflow idea to allow user-defined actions/scripts to be part and parcel of iOS. If they just kill Workflow, it will indicate to me that once again Apple is making poor decisions. It's one thing making some new product that nobody has ever really thought of before, anticpating the creation consumer demand, versus reacting against consumer demand.
 
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zorinlynx

macrumors 604
May 31, 2007
6,814
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Florida, USA
Once again, a big company buys a cool app just to kill it.

I was so pissed off when Google bought and killed Sparrow. It was the best mail client I'd ever used.
 
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SeattleMoose

macrumors 68000
Jul 17, 2009
1,960
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Der Wald
Once again, a big company buys a cool app just to kill it.

I was so pissed off when Google bought and killed Sparrow. It was the best mail client I'd ever used.

Hoping that this is NOT the case here. Integrating a revised version into the OS would be a nice productivity perk. If they just "kill it", then I will be pissed with you.
 
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JRobinsonJr

macrumors 6502a
Aug 20, 2015
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Arlington, Texas
Hoping that this is NOT the case here. Integrating a revised version into the OS would be a nice productivity perk. If they just "kill it", then I will be pissed with you.

Perhaps it's not the case, but either way the acquisition resulted in reduced short-term functionality... and likely future restrictions that will make it fundamentally less useful. Not necessarily a slam on Apple though, just commentary on the reality of the situation.
 
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Baumi

macrumors regular
Mar 31, 2005
237
328
God forbid Apple allows other competitor companies make use of workflow of course!

Why would they do that? I actually expect them to bake the functionality right into the official APIs, since it'd be a good way of allowing inter-app communication without breaking the system's sandboxing.
 
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BeefCake 15

macrumors 68000
May 15, 2015
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near Boston, MA
Why would they do that? I actually expect them to bake the functionality right into the official APIs, since it'd be a good way of allowing inter-app communication without breaking the system's sandboxing.

I meant this part.

Certain features were also removed from the app after Apple bought it, including workflow functionality that involved Google Chrome, Pocket, LINE, Telegram, and Uber.
 
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Donka

macrumors 68030
May 3, 2011
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Just bake this app into iOS for those of us who appreciate the automation. Don't let its functionality stagnate or be replaced by a greatly limited shadow of the app.
 
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Glassed Silver

macrumors 68020
Mar 10, 2007
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I still don't understand why they bought it... I mean, they have already developed vastly better and more encompassing software like it on macOS, they have proven they know automation and scripting.

But sure, take out functionality out of an app that will stop being on the App Store in a few months or a year or so anyways.

God forbid someone choose Chrome over Safari for something! Or Pocket over Safari's Reading List...

And Cook is wondering why people even need computers anymore...

None of this computes. It makes no ****ing sense to me.

Glassed Silver:win
 
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posguy99

macrumors 68000
Nov 3, 2004
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I still don't understand why they bought it... I mean, they have already developed vastly better and more encompassing software like it on macOS, they have proven they know automation and scripting.

It's a talent purchase, not an application purchase.
 
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Glassed Silver

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Mar 10, 2007
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It's a talent purchase, not an application purchase.
Then the Workflow team must have godly folks who are merely limited by what you can do as a third-party on iOS.

It's a great app, but it's nowhere near what Apple has long done themselves.

(keep in mind their key automation developer was let go just some weeks ago)

I just want real scripting, the ability for background tasks (timed and constant) without having to keep an app in the app drawer (although there is limited support already for that it seems) and scripting support for iWork for iOS. (e.g. let me scan something using one app that creates an entry in a Numbers sheet with a timestamp and any info I may enter whilst scanning. (basically a check-in system)

iPhone has so much great hardware, but real scripting is something that would truly boost it.

Glassed Silver:ios
 
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GermanSuplex

macrumors 65816
Aug 26, 2009
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29,318
So today, it looks like Apple has used its purchase of Workflow to enable new features in Siri. It looks like Siri will be able to handle more complex tasks now, but I wonder what will become of the original Workflow app... its pretty handy for streamlining a few things that would take multiple steps to do in iOS. They also used the same look of the app... I imagine they will discontinue the app, but I doubt all the features of the app make it into Siri. It would suck to lose some of the features I've been using.
 
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