Just like the newly presented iMessage but instead of just between iOS devices, with the Mac too.

I've looked at Handoff. It can only send links to the iPhone from the Mac.

I've looked at Droplr. It requires public sharing on a Twitter account. Not what I want.

I've been using email and have been recommended Evernote. But these solutions require a document that I must create, wait to sync, and/or later delete to free up clutter. I just want to send a quick message.

I just want an app/application pair that can quickly share links, notes, and pictures between devices, like iMessage.

Does what I desire exist?

  • What exactly is your usage case scenario?
    – cregox
    Commented Jun 14, 2011 at 12:59
  • I think of something I want to remember while working out, I send myself a note on the iPhone and then move it to the relevant application when I get home on my Mac. I see a link I want to read on my iPhone, I send it from my Mac to my iPhone. I find a link I want to read on the larger screen of my Mac, I send it from my iPhone to my Mac. Right now I use email for this and it is needlessly circuitous and leaves a mess of emails where I don't want or need permanent records. Commented Jun 17, 2011 at 15:08
  • Have you tried ReadItLater?
    – cregox
    Commented Jun 17, 2011 at 15:12
  • 1
    I mean seriously, how is this not extremely clear? People will use iMessage to quickly send text, images, and links to each other. Wtf is so mysterious about that? I want to be able to send text, images, and links without leaving an email footprint and without having to sync. Commented Aug 19, 2011 at 13:12
  • 1
    I think Droplr does all the things you want. It does not require a public sharing on Twitter. Even if you only save a link without sharing on Twitter you can see it in iOS.
    – cahuk
    Commented Feb 19, 2012 at 21:43

11 Answers 11


Apple OSX Mountain Lion has been announced, it includes a few of the iOS apps on the mac desktop such as Notes, Game Center, reminders, twitter and message.



The best solution I have found for quick and seamless transfer of clips, pictures and links is PasteBot.

Currently it works for WiFi sync, but in practice, my phone is always with me when I get home and I don't really need the data to get to the mac sooner than when I'm back home. I would expect them to try to extend the syncing to use the iCloud API announced but still in beta testing - but there's no promise it will work just like iMessage over the air using sync.

I don't use PasteBot to share links since I use pinboard.in and instapaper for that and they work so much better for me than getting the links over a clipboard. The announced Reading List sync between iOS and Safari on the desktop might also serve your needs.

Good luck - there are many options and hopefully you find one that works best for you.

  • 2
    PasteBot is awesome, and highly recommended. You can easily copy & paste between your iPhone and Mac.
    – bahamat
    Commented Jul 18, 2011 at 6:00
  • 1
    Thanks for the recommendation. Unfortunately, it just isn't what I'm looking for. I need something that will work over 3G and exchange text, images, and links between devices like a text client. Commented Aug 18, 2011 at 21:50

I agree iMessage is the best solution. For those that (for whatever reason, may not be able to use this) here is a solution for quick notes sync. I created a contact on my iPhone called "My Notes" and put what text I want on the notes section and it instantly syncs with Address Book on my mac. And at the desktop I do the reverse, I go to the same contact and add a note in the notes section and it syncs instantly.

Quick, no file to create/save/manually sync/whatever.

However, it's only for quick text notes, not photos/files/etc.

I thought it was cool ;) but iMessenger is more complete and now it's available... but hey, it's good to have choices.


Evernote does this. Photos, notes, screenshots, audio memos, etc. can be captured and shared between your Mac and iPhone.

  • Right. I forgot to mention that I don't want something that makes a document that I must create, wait to sync, or later delete to free up clutter. Just a quick message. I'll add this to the description. Commented Jun 13, 2011 at 15:31

I don't know iMessage and I can't see why you need this, but there is Syncopy. Hope this does it.

  • "I can't see why you need this". Wow. I thought I made it pretty clear in the question why I need this: to quickly send links, pictures, and notes. Syncopy is closer to what I need than most, but still not what I am looking for. Commented Jun 17, 2011 at 15:14
  • @Chris "quickly" is too vague, that's why I asked the scenario and then it made little more sense. Thing is, often we think we need something while we really don't, because there's a better way to do it. I can say that for myself and a lot of things apple do work with this in mind. - And I thought I made it pretty clear I'm shooting in the dark here, because I don't identify with your needs and I hardly know those tools such as iMessage or Droplr. :)
    – cregox
    Commented Jun 17, 2011 at 15:19


iTunes will sync Safari bookmarks, Notes app notes and photos.

iMessage doesn't sync anything between devices. It's like GMail for text messaging. You access your text messaging conversations from any device.

  • It only syncs if I connect the device and wait for all manner of other things to sync. I want this done quickly, wirelessly, and all from the same app. Also, I don't want bookmarks. I want to just quickly look at a link. I don't want to have to create a bookmark and delete it later when I am finished with it. I'm sorry, but this is a bad solution and nothing close to what I am asking for. Commented Jun 17, 2011 at 15:11
  • It's not at all clear what you're asking for. I don't see what any of this has to do with iMessage or what exactly you're trying to do. If syncing isn't the answer just text or email yourself the link/note/picture.
    – Sean
    Commented Jun 17, 2011 at 15:51
  • Email leaves a footprint that I don't want. I don't want to clutter my inbox with small notes to myself. I want to be able to send a quick note. Just like a texting client. If you don't know of such a client, it's fine to just resign yourself to not knowing. Criticizing me for wanting the type of software I'm asking for in my question is not a good answer. Commented Aug 18, 2011 at 21:53

RE: ".. I just want an app/application pair that can quickly share links, notes, and pictures between devices, like iMessage."

There is nothing I know of that does everything you require as simply as iMessage, but I can give you my solution for this (since this is something that I also require).

For quickly sharing links & notes between iOS devices and a Mac (as well as PCs running Windows or Linux), I use simplenote.

You can create a free account and then start using simplenote on all of your devices, simply through their web login (you can also buy a neat simplenote app so that you can store your notes offline, when you are not connected to the internet, but this is optional).

For quickly sharing photos between iOS devices and a Mac, I use instagram.

Finally, for when I don't want to write a note to myself, but just simply take note of a particular web site (or URL), I use instapaper (which is free a web based service that you can use, as well as an optional iOS app that you can buy).

Please note, since instagram and simplenote both have published their web api's, there are a number of instagram and simplenote clients that you can install on your Mac (again, this is optional, since you can just use their free web based service).

The following are optional apps you can install on a Mac :

For the Mac, I use nvALT, which syncs my simplenote notes without needing to use a web browser to login to their web site.

Also, you may find Screenstagram a nice instagram screen saver on the Mac.

For a full fledged instagram client, try instaDesk, or Carousel.

Hope this helps.

  • Thanks for the comprehensive answer. I would upvote it, but I don't have enough rep. I'll try some of these solutions. Commented Aug 20, 2011 at 14:16

Check out the iOS app called Notefile. It syncs seamlessly with the Notefile widget on Mac. Its syncing is just about instanteous with all devices.


There is no need for third-party apps whether free or paid.

Notes on iOS syncs with Mail.app on OS X across accounts; iCloud not required.

As far as pictures, they do require iCloud syncing. The photos part are synced to ~/Library/Application Support/iLifeAssetManagement/assets/sub each photo into a file. There exists a script that does copy the photos into a directory of your choice. You can search for it.

For movies I have not found a simple and elegant way to have them sync over the air yet; without the clutter of third-party solution of course.

I hope this does suffice.

It would be nice to click and hold on something you want to share in iOS and request that it be sent to OS X. Right click on something you want to be sent to iOS and have it sent that way as well.


Looks like Apple answered my prayers themselves:


What a lot of posters weren't getting is that I don't want to use synced notes and email because that requires a tedious "compose" stage and also leaves behind a bunch of clutter that I either have to search through or delete later.

iMessage lets me quickly send a new message and/or file, lets focus on the latest message, and automatically gets rid of earlier messages over time.


Currently, the best app for this is DeskConnect.

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